New Zealand: Giant rare and smelly plant flowers for the first time in NZ

A rare giant of the plant world has flowered for the first time in New Zealand, at the Auckland Domain. The strange, unpredictable and beautiful Amorphophallus titanum, which originates from the rainforests of Sumatra in Indonesia, has been growing at council-owned nursery and Wintergarden for around seven years.

The plant began opening at approximately 2pm on Saturday 30 November and the bloom is expected to last until the end of Sunday 1 December. Public visiting hours have been extended to 8.30pm on Sunday.

Auckland Domain manager David Millward, of City Parks Services, says this is the first time the plant has produced a bloom, creating a good deal of excitement amongst his team and visitors to the garden.

"The titan arum, as it’s commonly known, can produce a single leaf the size of a small tree every year for seven to ten years before showing any signs of producing a flower.

"We have been watching this one very closely and were delighted to finally confirm that a flower was on the way - it felt a bit like being expectant parents!" he says

Auckland Council’s Manager of Parks Sports and Recreation Ian Maxwell says this is a momentous occasion for the Wintergarden and in New Zealand botanical terms.

"Many New Zealanders will have seen this plant on David Attenborough’s ‘Kingdom of Plants’ but never thought they might see one in Auckland.


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