Skiplink Navigation

Main Features

University readies for rare bloom


A giant flower, taller than a man, is expected to open on Thursday at the botanical garden at Basel University.

The only previous time a titan arum (Amorphophallus titanum) produced a flower in Switzerland was 75 years ago.

It has taken the garden’s 20kg corm 17 years to reach the blossoming stage, but the two-metre tall flower will die back after only a few days. Its mother plant last bloomed in the Frankfurt Palm Garden in 1992.

The titan arum’s distinctive smell, reminiscent of carrion or fish, but appreciated by certain insects, has given it the colloquial name of “corpse flower”. 

Native to Sumatra’s tropical rain forest, it requires a humid climate to grow and even in the wild blossoms very infrequently.

Huge though Basel’s flower is, the tallest specimen ever recorded was about  three metres high.

A webcam has been set up and the university garden is expecting a rush of visitors. and agencies


Neuer Inhalt

Horizontal Line

Survey Swiss Abroad

Survey: Keyboard and Hand close-up

Dear Swiss Abroad, tell us what you think

Survey Swiss Abroad

subscription form

Form for signing up for free newsletter.

Sign up for our free newsletters and get the top stories delivered to your inbox.

Click here to see more newsletters