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Rare foul flower spreads stench in Orange County

Saturday - 6/21/2014, 7:20am  ET

COSTA MESA, Calif. (AP) -- The stench of blue cheese and dead bodies at a Southern California college is not repelling visitors but drawing them in.

A huge, rare and famously putrid Indonesian flower is blooming this weekend, spreading its stench across Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa.

The school said in a statement that the stench of the so-called corpse flower has been compared to rotting flesh, and the greenhouse where it's unfurling its blossom is open to members of the public who want to take a whiff.

The flower uses flies instead of bees to spread its sticky pollen. It produces two sulfurous chemicals within its leaves that the flies find attractive.

The plant at the college is about 5 feet tall and growing fast.


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