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Monday, 28 November 2011

Largest Flowers in the World

Largest Flowers in the World

   

Credit: verigi
Rafflesia arnoldii is noted for producing the largest individual flower on earth. This rare flower is found in the rainforests of Indonesia. It can grow to be 1 meter (3 feet) across and weigh up to 7 kg (15 pounds) it is a parasitic plant, with no visible leaves, roots, or stem. It attaches itself to a host plant to obtain water and nutrients. When in bloom, the Rafflesia emits a repulsive odor, similar to that of rotting meat. This odor attracts insects that pollinate the plant.


Amorphophallus titanum in “Wilhelma Botanical
and Zoological Gardens” Stuttgart, Germany taken by Lothar Grünz.
Another enormous flower found in Indonesia is the Amorphophallus titanum, or Titan arum. It is also known as the "corpse flower" for its unpleasant odor. Like the Rafflesia, the Titan emits the smell of rotting flesh to attract pollinators. Technically, the Titan arum is not a single flower. It is a cluster of many tiny flowers, called an inflorescence. The Titan arum has the largest unbranched inflorescence of all flowering plants. The plant can reach heights of 2 to 4 meter (7 to 12 feet) and grows from the underground corm. The corm is the largest known, weighing around 50 kilograms (110 lb). In 2005, the tallest bloom in cultivation, some 2.74 m (8 ft. 11 in.) high, was achieved at the Botanical Garden of the University of Bonn in Germany in 2003. The event was acknowledged by the Guinness Book of Records.
On 20 October 2005, this record was broken at the botanical and zoological garden Wilhelma in Stuttgart, Germany. The bloom reached a height of 2.94 m (9 ft. 6 in.).


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