Corpse Flower to Bloom at U.S. Botanic Garden in D.C.

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Visitors look at the Arum Titan, the largest flower in the world.  (Photo credit: SEBASTIEN BOZON/AFP/Getty Images)

Visitors look at the Arum Titan, the largest flower in the world. (Photo credit: SEBASTIEN BOZON/AFP/Getty Images)

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WASHINGTON — A giant rainforest plant known as a corpse flower for its terrible smell is set to bloom at the U.S. Botanic Garden next to the Capitol.

Garden officials say the titan arum flower could bloom Monday. The garden extended its hours from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. to give visitors the chance to see the flower in full bloom — and to smell its scent of rotting flesh.

Scientists say the flower’s strange odor serves to attract beetles for pollination.

This plant is about 10 years old, and this is its first flower. The bloom will only last 24 to 48 hours.

The last corpse flower to bloom at the Botanic Garden was in 2007.

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(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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