Tuesday with Morty: Stinky, with partly blooming leaves

Jun 12, 2018

An open window still exists to see - and smell - the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens' stinkiest flower.

Credit Julianna Sebastian / WBFO News

Morty the corpse flower began blooming on Sunday, causing staff to go into preparation for the biggest season at the Botanical Gardens this year.

"We're excited," said President and CEO David Swarts. "It's a unique flower. It's an opportunity for people across the country to come in and see this flower - and just, just be able to smell this wonderful, disgusting frangrance."

During the flower's rare bloom, people of all ages and areas come to the Botanical Gardens to visit the native of Sunamtra, Indonesia, and create their own opinion of what the plant's smell reminds them. However, Morty will only be in bloom for 24-48 hours, so hours have been extended to allow as many visitors as possible experience the unique plant.

Morty's uniqueness also provides a learning experience, showing that not all flowers are created equal - in smell or beauty.

"It has a different smell than all the other plants," said one visiting youngster.

"I've never seen such a huge flower. It's almost 5' tall," said Linda Suchocki, who also was there to get a whiff. "It is a little bit stinky. I think within the next day, it's gonna be really stinky and start to attract a lot of flies."

Last time the flower bloomed, in 2014, the Botanical Gardens saw a record number of people visit - and Morty has certainly put the South Buffalo landmark on the national flora map.

"When Morty arrived on the scene, he sort of pushed us up over the top," said Botanical Gardens spokesperson Erin Grajek. "He made us relevant in Western New York and he really connected to a lot of people, because he is such a different and unusual experience that people came to see him - and I say this all the time, once you come to the Botanical Gardens, you're gonna come back."