16 Flowers with the Most Repulsive Scents in the World

Beautiful flowers that smell like hell.

These organisms look like heaven but they smell like hell.

Starfish Cactus (Stapelia grandiflora)

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This unique flowering plant named as Starfish Cactus although it is not related to cacti at all is also commonly known as Starfish Flower.

Elephant Foot Yam (Amorphophallus paeoniifolius)

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This lovely-looking flower grows in wild form in my beloved country -Philippines and in other Southeast Asian countries like Malaysia and Indonesia. Elephant Foot Yam or Whitespot Giant Arum or Stink Lily, is a tropical tuber crop that offers excellent scope for adoption in the tropical countries as a cash crop due to its production potential and popularity as a vegetable in various delicious cuisines. Elephant Foot Yam is basically a crop from Southeast Asian origin.

Stapelia gigantea

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Stapelia gigantea is another flowering plant that is related to the Starfish Cactus. Stapelia gigantea sometimes also goes by the name of Stapelia nobilis and Stapelia marlothii. They share the same trait with Starfish Flower; they both have a stinking smell.

These are flowers that emit an odor that smells like rotting flesh.

Hydnora africana

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This peculiar parasitic plant known as Hydnora africana is a plant native to southern Africa. The plant grows underground, except for a fleshy flower that emerges above ground and emits an odor of feces to attract its natural pollinators, dung beetles, and carrion beetles. The flowers act as traps for a brief period retaining the beetles that enter, then releasing them when the flower is fully opened.

Titan arum (Amorphophallus titanum)

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Titan Arum’s is a unique plant with a unique name. It is derived from Ancient Greek amorphos, “without form, misshapen” plus phallos, “penis”, and titan, “giant”. This flowering plant has the largest unbranched inflorescence in the world. The Titan Arum was originally discovered in Sumatra, Indonesia. They can be found in many botanic gardens around the world but is still indigenous only to the tropical forests of Sumatra. Due to its fragrance, which is reminiscent of the smell of a decomposing mammal, the Titan Arum is also known as the “Corpse Flower” or “Corpse Plant” (in Indonesian, “bunga bangkai” – bunga means flower, while bangkai means corpse or cadaver.

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26 Responses to “16 Flowers with the Most Repulsive Scents in the World”
  1. xoxo Says...

    On December 8, 2008 at 4:52 am

    Great informative stinky yet beautiful article :)

  2. James DeVere Says...

    On December 8, 2008 at 5:01 am

    Well researched. Would have liked more descriptors about the scents – carrion, faeces – any more adjectives? Beautiful pictures and another well researched piece.

    Good one . j

  3. Keerthana Says...

    On December 8, 2008 at 6:24 am

    nice collection of flowers….

  4. Christine Ramsay Says...

    On December 8, 2008 at 9:26 am

    What unusual looking flowers. I have never seen anything like them here.
    A great article.

  5. goodselfme Says...

    On December 8, 2008 at 11:36 am

    They are so beautiful looking . Hard to believe they stink. WEll done write, my friend.

  6. Moses Ingram Says...

    On December 8, 2008 at 12:06 pm

    Very nice and a great article. I wonder why something so beautiful would smell so bad?

  7. The Daily Digital Says...

    On December 8, 2008 at 12:51 pm

    Rafflesia keithii looks like those old water sprinklers people used to use to decorate their yards. Cool!

  8. Unofre Pili Says...

    On December 8, 2008 at 5:10 pm

    Very informative.

  9. valli Says...

    On December 8, 2008 at 6:23 pm

    Nice info.

  10. Karen N Says...

    On December 8, 2008 at 8:34 pm

    Very interesting!

  11. eddiego65 Says...

    On December 9, 2008 at 8:11 am

    This excellent and interesting article really stunk!

  12. Juancav Says...

    On December 9, 2008 at 12:18 pm

    Very novelty article , One is surprised to see these rare plants.

  13. Anne Lyken Garner Says...

    On December 9, 2008 at 1:53 pm

    The flowers are very beautiful in appearance. I have seen most of them before, but a fine article, non-the-less.

  14. Brenda Nelson Says...

    On December 9, 2008 at 8:55 pm

    norbert – I sure hope your house isnt full of these…
    really neat looking though

  15. Mark Gordon Brown Says...

    On December 9, 2008 at 9:04 pm

    I thought eddies comment was great.. this article stunk! (but in a good kinda flowery way)
    Guess as a side note: DO NOT INCLUDE these in Flower Boquetts to your Sweetheart!

  16. Global Warming is a HOAX Says...

    On December 9, 2008 at 10:32 pm

    Brillant !

  17. Blue Buttefly Says...

    On December 10, 2008 at 9:12 am


  18. Joe B. Says...

    On December 11, 2008 at 8:36 am

    Excellent article and beautiful pics.

  19. PR Mace Says...

    On December 14, 2008 at 6:16 pm

    A flower should always smell sweet. Too bad they don’t. Good article. Your photos made your articles special.

  20. Louie Jerome Says...

    On January 17, 2009 at 11:43 am

    Great article

  21. Louie Jerome Says...

    On January 17, 2009 at 11:55 am

    I have blogged your article here:


    it might get you a few new reads! I hope that’s ok.

  22. Carolyn Ann Aish Says...

    On March 31, 2009 at 2:44 pm

    Incredible — what amazing creativity God has, to create all of these as well as the other flowers, creatures, fish and fungus… thanks for sharing!

  23. Rachel Says...

    On April 22, 2009 at 4:25 pm

    This was great! I just stumbled upon it and decided to read it and it was really wonderful. Good job!

  24. Abrimaal Says...

    On April 24, 2009 at 3:58 pm

    This is far from SCIENCE!!! You publish fungi as flowers, and the Amorphophallus you have as A. paeoniifolius shows a photo of A. prainii.

  25. bacon Says...

    On June 15, 2009 at 4:35 pm

    that is not amorphophallus paeonifolius is different

  26. wolffia lei Says...

    On February 2, 2010 at 8:56 am

    beautibut stinky

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