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Amorphophallus titanum flowering at Selby Gardens


Here is a copy of our latest press release. The largest bud is now showing 
spathe and spadix through an opening in the outer sheaths and is about 35 
inches tall, growing about 3-4 inches per day. Based upon flowering data from 
Fairchild Tropical Garden and Atlanta Botanical Garden, our largest bud 
should be open in about 10-12 days. The smaller may be up to a week later, so 
we are planning a pollination attempt. Stay tuned to our web site at: 
www.selby.org

Donna Atwood
Selby Gardens
8aa S. Palm Ave.
Sarasota, FL 34236
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
COLOSSAL BOTANICAL SUPERSTARS PREPARE TO FLOWER
AT MARIE SELBY BOTANICAL GARDENS

	The Titan arum, or Amorphophallus titanum, considered by some to be 
the  world’s largest flower, is rapidly developing its immense bloom at Selby 
Gardens.  Sometime during mid-May, this bizarre behemoth of the plant world 
will unfold a frilled crimson pleated bud encasing a towering columnar 
spadix, rising from the center, ultimately reaching a predicted height of 
seven feet or more.  This rare flowering event has only occurred 7 times 
during this century in the United States.  It is a true botanical wonder!
	Over the next two weeks, the Titan Arum, known only from Sumatra but 
a close relative of the more familiar Jack-in-the-Pulpit, will vigorously 
unfurl its complex inflorescence composed of hundreds of individual male and 
female flowers.  During this time, the bud will grow about 4 inches a day, 
but the full flowering will last only 48 hours, afterwards collapsing 
dramatically of its own weight.  
	This event promises even greater titillation than all others of this 
kind, as Selby will have TWO of these magnificent monsters in bloom!  Because 
all living organisms vary, both plants may not reach their peak flowering on 
exactly the same day.  But this lapse of a few days between the critical 
point will allow Selby’s horticulturists an unprecedented opportunity to 
hand-pollinate one of the plants by transferring pollen from male flowers of 
one plant to female flowers of the other.  Never before has the Titan Arum 
yielded seeds in cultivation, so this planned attempt, if successful, will be 
a first!
	Visitors can view the flowering giants in the trellis area just 
outside the doors of Selby’s Display House, beginning Thursday, May 6, 1999, 
from 10 AM to 5 PM daily, until the end of flowering which is predicted to be 
sometime around May 20-25.  It is not yet certain exactly how long this 
amazing display will last, so visitors are advised to call 941-366-2815 for a 
recorded message with daily progress reports. For images and updates 
throughout the flowering event check Selby's web page at: www.selby.org





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