Fester is the given name of one of The Botanical Gardens’ corpse flowers (Amorphophallus titanum). Fester is the smallest of three corpse flowers that were acquired by the The Botanical Gardens back in 2014. What makes the corpse flower (arum family – native to the rainforests of Sumatra, Indonesia) so unusual is that it is only known to bloom once every 6 to ten years. Each plant remains in full bloom for 24 to 48 hours. As luck would have it, Fester is currently in his blooming stage (he began to open earlier today), which means that if you’re anywhere around The Botanical Gardens, you can stop in to see nature’s wondrous marvel.
When they are not blooming they send up enormous leaf structures to collect energy to bloom again in the future.
It was back in June when Fester’s largest counterpart, Morty, also made his blooming appearance. Those who missed the show now have a second chance to see this rare spectacle. But be warned! Fester’s giant bloom might look impressive, but it does tend to get stinky, akin to rotting flesh! The full bloom will only be around for a short period of time, but Fester will be sticking around for up to two weeks after he flowers, before he will soon begin to wilt, and his stench will fully dissipate. At that time, he will be taken off public display, to await another grand appearance years from now.
In tandem with Fester’s blooming, the Botanical Gardens has launched a plant acquisition fundraising campaign titled Strange Likes Company. The campaign is designed to enhance the outfit’s collection of plants within the “strange and unique” category, such as the Monkey Face Orchid, the Rainbow Eucalyptus, and Buddha’s Hand Citron. These are the types of mysterious plants that tend to draw large crowds, who then stick around to learn about the rest of the plants in the collection. Everyone loves a mystery, even when it comes to plants. Donations can be made at www.buffalogardens.com.
The Botanical Gardens will be open extended hours June 30 and July 1. Today, June 30, the Botanical Gardens will stay open extended hours and the last admission tickets will be sold at 10pm. Tomorrow, July 1, the Botanical Gardens will open at 10am and the last admission tickets will be sold at 10pm.
Updates will be available on the Botanical Gardens’ website, Facebook page, Twitter and Instagram accounts – @BuffaloGardens and through Morty’s Twitter account @MortyStinks. Like and follow to keep up to date with Fester’s progress. Use hashtags #CorpseFlower and #FunkyFester when posting!