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Rafflesia arnoldii

Pungent plants

Noteworthy pungent plants from around the world.

pungent plant from around the world
A blossom of the infamous Titan Arum (corpse flower).

Titan Arum (Amorphophallus titanum) The corpse flower is known as “the worst smelling flower in the world.” It is native to the rainforest of western Sumatra.

Stinking Corpse Lily (Rafflesia arnoldii) Shares the name corpse flower as it smells like rotting carrion. The largest individual flower in the world, it is native to the rainforests of Sumatra and Borneo in Indonesia.

Carrion Flower (Stapelia gigantea) This lovely star-like bloom smells like decaying tissue, and its hairy, leather-like texture mimics the rotting flesh of a dead animal, which is all part of its ploy to lure its pollinator of choice – flies. It is native to South Africa.

Stinking Root Parasite (Hydnora africana) – This parasitic native of the arid deserts of South Africa grows entirely underground. It smells like dung to attract black beetles.

Voodoo lily (Dracunculus vulgaris) Also referred to the black dragon and dragonwort, the speckled blood-red flower native to Greece reeks of rotting flesh. Thankfully, the smell only lasts one day as the flower is quite stunning.

Dead horse Arum (Dracunculus crintitus) In addition to  using the scent of decay to lure insects; this member of a rare group of thermogenic plants,  also raises its temperature to trick insects into believing it is a hot rotting meal. It is native to Corsica, Sardinia and the Balearic Islands.

Skunkvine (Paederia foetida) Native to the tropics of Asia and Polynesia, skunkvine has delicate, pretty flowers, it’s the plant’s leaves that reek.

For other pungent smelling plants, click here to read about Stinky Flowers.

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