July 14

Morticia Returns to The Spheres

The gorgeous but smelly plant was on full display this week.

With the sweet scent of death in the air, The Spheres just hosted a public viewing of a rare botanical event — the bloom of its resident corpse flower, Morticia. Visitors’ enthusiasm was undeterred by the plant’s notorious, pungent aroma — over two days, approximately 4,800 visitors flocked to witness the spectacle.

People waiting in line to see the a blooming corps flower.

People waiting in line to see the a blooming corps flower.

The Horticulture staff at the Amazon Spheres chose the plant’s moniker to highlight the flower’s eeriness and intrigue, just like its Addams Family namesake.

The corpse flower, or Amorphophallus titanum, was added to The Spheres’ collection for its striking size, rarity both in nature and botanical gardens, and its absorbing natural history. Its distinctively strong scent makes it a flagship species at botanical gardens throughout the world.

But Morticia isn’t the only gem to behold here. The Spheres is a treasure trove of over 7,000 varieties and species of plants, many of which are rare. During public viewing sessions, visitors can feast their eyes on plants such as the golden fuchsia (Deppea splendens), possibly extinct in the wild and native to Mexico, or the lush, green Philodendrons joeppi and Spiritus sancti, Latin American aroids that are very rare in their native habitats. Another highlight is the Rhododendron taxifolium, found only in a single location in the mountains of Luzon, the Philippines.

The Spheres continues to be a haven of natural wonder, displaying the beauty and diversity of our planet’s flora. The public is invited to explore The Spheres’ indoor gardens by reservation during the first and third Saturday of each month, free of charge. Reservations become available 15 days before the date. Click here to book your experience and to learn more.

Story & photographs by Ethan Chung.

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