Corpse flower’s anticipated bloom delayed

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Corpse flower’s anticipated bloom delayed

NICOLE KHUDYAKOV

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Last Friday, science teacher CJ Addington’s Amorphophallus Titanum, better known as a corpse flower, prepared  to bloom for the first time in ten years. However, there have been no recent changes in the flower, besides the initial corpse-like smell.

Addington believes that there is a chance the overhead security light had an effect on the flower’s growth.

“I’m suspecting it might be because of the lighting. There is a campus security light right over this greenhouse that shines on the greenhouse all night.

Even if the flower does not bloom, Addington is happy with the result.

“Even if it fails to bloom I’m still gonna call it a success,” Addington said. “Next time we have a flower, I can take what I learned from the previous two flowers and make the next one be better.”

Addington hopes that his next two corpse flowers, which are set to bloom sometime in the next four to five years, will flower successfully. His initial love of challenging plants and gardening encouraged him to pursue this lengthy, ten year project.

“I do like exotic, weird plants and plants that are kind of unusual” Addington said. “ [ I like ] plants that are kind of a challenge.”

Addington’s cultivation of the plant became a part of his daily routine when he bought it ten years ago, from a greenhouse in UC Davis. At the time, the corpse flower that he would take to calling Corona was only a seedling. Now, according to Addington, he must feed it once a week, water it, and repot it every year.

“The day-to-day routine is actually pretty easy,” Addington said. “It’s really not hard, you just have to do it for ten years.”

The plant’s scheduled bloom brought with it a host of media attention and a surge in popularity, since Roseville High School is the only high school that has successfully raised a corpse flower that ended up blooming. The previous flower, standing at three feet, blossomed in 2011.

The amount of media attention the flower recieved impressed Cameron Rogers, a junior in Addington’s class. According to Rogers, he also felt excited about the corpse flower’s impending bloom.

“I feel like this is a once in a lifetime opportunity to see a corpse flower,  so I feel like that’s really cool.”

In addition to interviews for channels such as Fox 40 and Good Day Sacramento, Addington set up both a Youtube channel and a livestream of the flower due to the high demand.  

“When they bloom, it gets a lot of attention and gets people interested in the greenhouse. I think sometimes people forget we even have a greenhouse,” Addington said.

According to another student in one of Addington’s classes, junior Bryson Eslinger, Addington gives the class a daily update on the corpse flower and remains excited.

“I have faith that it’s gonna bloom,” Eslinger said.

 

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