(Wednesday, 4/25 – 4:00pm MST Update): Want to watch something really cool? Check out this 3 minute time lapse of Rosie the Corpse flower blooming. Link to video HERE.
In case you missed it earlier, watch as Tucson Botanical Gardens Butterfly Exhibit Manager Michael Madsen and Executive Director Michelle Conklin explain what is so unique about the flower and what brings people (and pollinating insects) so close to something so stinky. Link to video HERE.
(Wednesday, 4/25 – 12:15pm MST Update): Rob Elias and Michael Madsen from the Tucson Botanical Gardens will be joining the YouTube chat at approximately 1:15pm MST (3:15pm CDT). Have your questions ready and thanks for joining the live stream.
(Wednesday, 4/25 – 11:00am MST Update): We have important information to pass along regarding the Tucson Botanical Gardens Rosie live stream and YouTube Chat. A final decision about the live stream has not been made, but we will be closing the chat today at 2:00pm MST (4:00pm CDT).
We greatly appreciate everyone who visited the chat room and the wonderful interaction. We will keep you updated when a final determination is made regarding the live stream.
Thanks to the Tucson Botanical Gardens for being a wonderful partner through this entire process, and a very special thanks to Rosie the corpse flower for making this all possible.
(Tuesday, 4/24 – 1:45pm MST Update): Join us again this afternoon at 2:00pm MST (4:00pm CDT) for another Rosie YouTube chat. Rob Elias, Director of Marketing & Communications with Tucson Botanical Gardens will be back to answer any questions about Rosie and the Tucson Botanical Gardens. Have your questions ready, and we’ll see you at 2:00pm MST (4:00pm CDT).
(Tuesday, 4/24 – 10:30am MST Update): Hey Rosie fans! Watch as Tucson Botanical Gardens Butterfly Exhibit Manager Michael Madsen and Executive Director Michelle Conklin explain what is so unique about the flower and what brings people (and pollinating insects) so close to something so stinky. Link to story and video HERE.
(Tuesday 4/24 – 9:00am MST Update): Join us this morning at 9:30am MST (11:30am CDT) for a new Rosie YouTube chat. Rob Elias, Director of Marketing & Communications with Tucson Botanical Gardens will let us know what Rosie is doing now and what happens to her next.
Cox customers can watch the stream on Contour by saying “Rosie the corpse flower on YouTube” into their remote. It works… give it a try! Come back to YurView for more updates throughout the day.
(Monday 4/23 – 5:45pm MST Update): Michael Madsen YouTube chat moved to 6:30pm MST (8:30pm CDT). Have your Rosie questions ready!
(Monday 4/23 – 4:40pm MST Update): Michael Madsen, Butterfly Exhibit Manager will be back on YouTube chat at approximately 5:10pm MST (7:10pm CDT) to do another Q&A session. Stay tuned for more updates!
(Monday 4/23 – 2:30pm MST Update): Well, she’s here and we couldn’t be more excited that Rosie decided to bloom! We’ve been patiently waiting and everyone is starting to show up! As I type, there is about 150 people waiting in line to see her. There is no smell to her just yet, but we know it won’t be long before we start getting out the masks.
It’s going to be a long night at TBG tonight as we’ll be open until 10:00 pm. (Last ticket will be sold at 9:00 pm) and will reopen tomorrow morning at 7:00 to 8:30 for members only viewing. After that, TBG will be open to the public until 10:00 pm to accommodate as many people as possible (again, the last ticket will be sold at 9:00 pm). Stay tuned for more updates!
(Monday 4/23 – 2:00pm MST Update): Michael Madsen, Butterfly Exhibit Manager is answering questions right now on YouTube chat. More to come during bloom. The bloom process should take place over next 24-36 hours. Stay tuned to YurView for additional updates!
(Monday 4/23 – 12:00pm MST Update): It’s official… Rosie is opening!!
(Monday 4/23 – 9:30am MST Update): Brief update today on Rosie because there’s not much new with her. She’s still growing and is happy and awesome! But we got some really nice words from a member yesterday so I thought we’d share that with you. Enjoy!
“We have been members of the Garden for 16 years and visit the garden several times a year. This visit was the best ever. The amount of trees, bushes, etc. in bloom was astounding and the many changes you have made are beautiful and really enhance the visit to the garden. Someone or several people really know what they are doing as far as landscaping and the set-up of the garden. Best ever! Corpse flower fantastic to see. Keep up the excellent work.”
(Sunday 4/22 – 2:00pm MST Update): In addition to all the visitors we’ve had over the past week, we’ve had phone calls worldwide from Rosie fans watching online. We’ve had phone calls from people as far away as Australia that have been watching the livestream. And people are watching around the clock. A few days ago, we had an owl butterfly that was jealous with all the attention Rosie’s been getting and decided to land on the camera during the early morning hours. During that time, we were left numerous messages asking us to move the butterfly. That’s the beauty of live online viewing!
A quick Rosie update: Not much else to report other than she’s doing just fine. We were hoping to experience a bloom on Earth Day (and we still may), but she certainly has her own agenda and will bloom when she’s ready. Enjoy the rest of your Sunday!
(Sunday 4/22 – 10:00am MST Update): Good morning from TBG! Happy Earth Day! We just did another check on Rosie and we’re seeing progress! The spadix is starting to get a bit softer which means we’re really close now. It can take anywhere from 2-10 days after the final outer leaf falls for the bloom to take place. Today will be day 11. Now all we’re waiting for is to experience the poofs of odor from Rosie. Once this happens, we’ll be ready!
Michael provided an update with the chalkboard early this morning regarding Rosie’s statistics for the evening/morning (brilliant idea on his part), which we hope all of our viewers loved to see. The Gardens had near record attendance yesterday and we’re expecting the same today! We also had over 140,000 viewers on the livestream over the last 48 hours! Incredible! So thank you for tuning in and we’re hoping you’ll all get to see a bloom soon!
It will be a busy day at TBG, so we’ll update you all again soon when we have an opportunity. Enjoy your day!
(Saturday 4/21 – 5:00pm MST Update): Rosie had her share of visitors today and loves the excitement. So do all the social butterflies too! We’re anxiously awaiting Rosie’s bloom and we think it’s going to be pretty special. Michael will be working on getting the humidity back up in the exhibit and preparing it for tomorrow. In the meantime, Rosie will probably get a visit from a newly married couple this evening. So that’s something to look forward to on the live stream.
More butterflies will be introduced in the exhibit tomorrow and I’m sure Rosie, along with our guests, will love it too! Just a reminder: The Tucson Botanical Gardens will be open for members only from 7:00 am to 8:30 am during bloom. We will be extending our hours to 10:00 pm for all other guests during bloom only. We look forward to seeing you soon, hopefully, with a beautiful, stinking bloom!
(Saturday 4/21 – 1:45pm MST Update): Hi Everyone! Rosie’s temp was at 85.6 just a short time ago. Nothing to be concerned about and we’re tickled she’s doing so well. We haven’t experienced any poofs of scent yet, but it could come at any time. Please keep in mind that CP’s are night blooming plants so if she decides to bloom, it won’t be until the overnight hours. But as long as you stay tuned to our social media feed and keep watching the live stream, you’ll be able to see it happen!
Additional butterflies are going to be added to the exhibit soon to create an extra special experience for our guests that are stopping by. Plus, they will love Rosie once she decides to bloom.
(Saturday 4/21 – 10:45am MST Update): Rosie’s spadix has not heated to the “blooming” temperature yet, but she’s trending in the right direction. She has gone from growing 2″ a day to about 0.5″ so we believe the bloom time is near.
Our charaxes (butterflies) are ready to be introduced to the exhibit today. These butterflies will be very attracted to the smell once Rosie blooms. Stay tuned for more updates!
(Saturday 4/21 – 8:00am MST Update): With all the visitors yesterday, we had to make slight adjustments in the Cox Butterfly & Orchid Pavilion to increase the humidity levels. Michael worked on that last night and is happy with the conditions. Rosie is looking good and healthy!
For those following and contributing to the chat, Rob Elias is the only official person representing the TBG. Anyone else pretending to be representing TBG just isn’t so. Rob Elias will be on chat later today taking questions from our viewers. He is also working on seeing if Michael Madsen (those on chat have referred to him affectionately as Ladder Guy) get on chat later today for a brief Q&A session.
So please stay tuned and as always thanks for watching!!
(Friday 4/20 – 6:00pm MST Update): Rosie’s temp has cooled a bit. But she’s still well within good range. She’s getting so much attention with media right now.
Here’s a picture of Tucson’s KVOA Channel 4 (NBC) station out to spread the good word about Rosie. It’s been fun seeing so many visitors to the gardens and there’s no doubt it’s going to be a special time here if you’re able to make it.
Rosie’s spadix hasn’t seemed to soften any nor has she started to give off any aroma. When we experience those things, we know we’ll be really close.
(Friday 4/20 – 2:30pm MST Update): Just checked on Rosie and her temp has reached 91 degrees. A little warmer than yesterday which is a good sign.
If you’ve been watching the live stream, you will have seen a mysterious man late at night tending to Rosie and her surroundings. That is none other than Michael Madsen, our Butterfly Curator. He’s the genius that has been tending to Rosie over the past 4 years! The poor guy hasn’t had much sleep lately, but he’s really excited for the bloom.
Rosie is meeting so many nice people today from all over the country AND WORLD! Visitors from Detroit, Wisconsin, Australia, Canada stopped by to pay a visit. Much more to come later!
(Friday 4/20 – 12:00pm MST Update): Rosie had a line of almost 100 long this morning. It’s a really good thing she is photogenic!
On top of that, our first local celebrity stopped by early this morning. Mayor Hiremath from the Town of Oro Valley wanted to meet Rosie. You can see him in the picture along with the Executive Director of TBG, Michelle Conklin.
The amount of attention we’ve received in a very short period of time is pretty incredible! Lots of guests to the gardens and our live stream is being shared with over 40 networks nationwide (at last count)! Fox Business even provided coverage of the bloom this afternoon.
(Friday 4/20 – 8:00am MST Update): Rosie had a pretty uneventful evening after a very busy day of greeting guests. She grew 1.5 inches overnight and is getting a bit fatter. Could she be holding out for Earth Day to bloom?
If you’re like the rest of us and watching the live stream all night long, you might have seen that we still had over 500 people watching at 3:00 am and I hear we almost reached 10,000 total viewers yesterday! I’m sure Rosie is most certainly flattered! We had viewers from Rome, Italy, Canada, Trinidad & Tobago, and even Disneyland!
Stay tuned to the live stream as you may see a few cameo’s today from some local celebrities.
(Thursday 4/19 – 2:00pm MST Update): Rosie’s growth has slowed a bit which is a good sign the bloom will happen soon. If you’ve been watching the live stream, you’ve seen a lot of guests today! The prep work by staff is almost complete and we’re going to do the best we can to accommodate as many guests as possible during bloom.
Here’s a picture of the pollen we enthusiastically received from our friends at Chicago Botanic Garden. This is pollen from two Corpse Plants they have named Sumatra and Sunshine. This has to be transported in sub-zero temperatures and stored in the same sub-zero temperatures until ready to use. We have a one-time shot to get this right so we’re going to be extremely careful with the process.
In other news: The spadix is at 91 degrees at the moment which is considerably lower than the approximately 98 degrees it may get during bloom. The reason the spadix heats up is to attract pollinators. And the final bit of information in this update is that our additional butterflies will arrive tomorrow. So if it blooms tonight, we’ll be ready to pollinate.
(Thursday 4/19 – 10:30am MST Update): Rosie got a lot of attention today: She received a phone call from a woman in Portland, Oregon who was trying to book a plane ticket to Tucson during the bloom. A local Tucsonan took out a membership to the Gardens today stated, “I plan to visit every day because this plant has been on my bucket list since I was five years old” and the Gardens staff are rallying together, trying to get ready for the throngs of “Rosie Paparazzi.”
Botanic Gardens across the country share in the excitement and are happy to lend a hand: The Chicago Botanic Gardens loaned TBG educational interpretative signage, and their horticultural department has sent Corpse Flower pollen to Michael Madsen, TBG’s Butterfly Curator and Greenhouse Manager.
It’s tricky business trying to pollinate a stinker such as Rosie! Michael will be taking infrared measurements to track Rosie’s temperature and then he’ll just need to wait for just the right moment to dab on the pollen. After that, it’s a waiting game and everyone here at the Garden hopes our actions pay off.
(Original Story): The Amorphophallus Titanum, better known as the corpse flower (or titan arum), is one of the world’s largest and rarest flowering plants. The corpse flower blooming process can take up to 7-10 years or even decades, and the bloom only lasts for 24-36 hours.
It’s known as the corpse flower because it emits a strong odor often described as a decaying corpse. The Tucson Botanical Gardens has their own corpse flower named “Rosie”, and it is part of the Cox Butterfly and Orchid Pavilion exhibit.
Rosie is scheduled to bloom at any time, and you can watch the entire bloom happening live (click on the live feed above).
Rosie the Corpse Flower: What You Need to Know
How Rosie Made it to the Tucson Botanical Gardens:
According to Michael Madsen the Tucson Botanical Garden’s Butterfly Exhibit Manager, “We received Rosie as a gift from the University of California Fullerton, Edward Read was the donor. This is her 1st time to flower. We believe Rosie is 9 years old. She is currently 3 feet tall.”
How they determined Rosie was going to bloom:
Madsen says the plant goes through a series of dormancy then it shoots out of the ground.
Last Thursday, April 12th, the spadix (a spike of minute flowers closely arranged around a fleshy axis and typically enclosed in a spathe, characteristic of the arums) of the bloom poked out through the top of the bracts.
A bract is a modified or specialized leaf, especially one associated with a reproductive structure such as a flower, inflorescence axis or cone scale.
How Rosie got her name:
She was named by the Tucson Botanical Gardens.
They thought the name “Rosie” seemed most fitting, considering the plant’s pungent smell.
Are they sure Rosie is going to bloom?
According to Madsen, “100% Rosie will bloom, Thursday night or sometime shortly after. Late March they noticed Rosie coming out of dormancy.”
Rosie our Corpse plant has shed her skin, stay tuned for updates. pic.twitter.com/fthi3QFbjf
— Tucson Botanical (@TucBotanical) April 17, 2018
Rosie wasn’t expected to bloom for another 2 years:
According to Madsen, “We were not expecting Rosie to bloom for another 2 years. It will be a smaller bloom than the one at Chicago. When Rosie blooms she will receive pollen from Sumatra & Sunshine From the Chicago Botanic Garden.”
Other interesting tidbits about Rosie:
These plants are threatened by habitat loss and usually found in Indonesia, more specifically Sumatra.
After Rosie blooms she will produce small reddish fruit, it will take 6 months for fruit to ripen.
Once the fruit ripens, they will take the seeds out and sow them to attempt to grow some smaller Amorphophallus Titanums or share seeds with other botanical gardens.