corpse flower

noun
variants: or less commonly corpse plant

Definition of corpse flower 

: a tropical perennial herb (Amorphophallus titanium) of the arum family that is native to Sumatra and produces a tall, erect, yellowish-white spadix partly enclosed by a showy, white-spotted, green spathe which opens during bloom to reveal a reddish-purple interior and emit an odor of rotting flesh Part of the reason the corpse flower is drawing such big crowds is because it rarely blooms. It is also one of the biggest, stinkiest plants on the planet …— Lara Sorokanich

called also titan arum

Examples of corpse flower in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Spike’s return to the spotlight culminated Thursday, ending a nearly three-year cycle for this particular corpse flower. Daniel I. Dorfman, chicagotribune.com, "After 2015 failure, corpse flower blooms – and stinks – at Chicago Botanic Garden," 26 Apr. 2018 The bloom of the rare flower, Amorphophallus titanum (commonly known as the corpse flower) is set to happen between Thursday, July 12 and Saturday, July 14. Wzzm-tv (grand Rapids), Detroit Free Press, "Rare corpse flower will bloom soon in Grand Rapids," 11 July 2018 In the corpse flower, the volatile odor is dispersed by the heat the flower generates as the phallus-like bloom emerges, attracting carrion beetles and similar connoisseurs. New York Times, "Why Is the Corpse Flower So Stinky?," 6 July 2018 Visitors at the Chicago Botanic Garden in recent days had another opportunity to get a sight – and whiff – of one of the garden’s corpse flowers. Daniel I. Dorfman, chicagotribune.com, "Corpse flower makes repeat performance — this time outdoors — at Chicago Botanic Garden," 3 July 2018 The odor was emanating from an amorphophallus konjac, popularly called the corpse flower. Frank Vaisvilas, Daily Southtown, "Blooming corpse flower emits 'disgusting' odor at Lockport Township High School," 16 May 2018 This is the first time any of the 10 corpse flowers at the Domes has bloomed. Meg Jones, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Stinky corpse flower draws crowds to Domes for glimpse and whiff," 13 June 2018 In January, another corpse flower bloomed at the Cairns Botanic Gardens in Queensland, Australia. Lyndsey Matthews, Country Living, "A Rare Corpse Flower Is About to Bloom Any Second Now in Arizona," 20 Apr. 2018 Almost eight years after Lois the corpse flower enchanted the city of Houston, another one is blooming in the Museum District. Houston Chronicle, "There is a new, stinky corpse flower at the Houston Museum of Natural Science," 26 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'corpse flower.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of corpse flower

1938, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

8 Oct 2018

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The first known use of corpse flower was in 1938

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