Cal Poly Logo
Cal Poly Plant Conservatory Tour
Biological Sciences Department C a l i f o r n i a   P o l y t e c h n i c   S t a t e   U n i v e r s i t y  
Giant Carion Flower in bloom at the Cal Poly Plant Conservatory
 
::

Home

Virtual Tour

::
::
::
::
::
::
::
::
::
::
::
::
::
::
::
::
::
::
::

Aquatic Plants
Bombax
Bromeliads
Cacti

Caudiciforms
Ceiba
Desert Room
Endangered Species
Legumes
Natives
Orchids
Papaya
Peperomia
Solanum
Stapelia

Stevia
Succulents
Trees
Miscellaneous

Plant conservatory logo


:: Stapelia gigantea ::

The Carrion Flower, Star Fish Flower, or Giant Zulu

Stapelias are strange succulent plants native to the deserts of South Africa. The extremely large, starfish-shaped flowers of Stapelia gigantea are pale yellow with reddish stripes.

The flowers give off a pestilent smell that attracts flies. As they buzz from flower to flower, flies collect pollen and transport it to the next plant, thereby ensuring the successful pollination of this species. The flower’s putrid smell and hairy, leathery texture mimic the rotting flesh of a dead animal.

 

(click for large image)

:: :: :: :: ::

 

Cal Poly Home | Cal Poly Find It
 

Cal Poly Plant Conservatory
Biological Sciences Department
California Polytechnic State University
San Luis Obispo, Ca 93407
805.756.2775
mritter@calpoly.edu