A Smelly Situation and A Beautiful Sight at Orange Coast College

College campuses are normally places where one can go to find all sorts of the weird and wonderful things that make this world and life in it interesting, but one Southern California college campus really stinks when it comes to special presentations, like literally it stinks. Orange Coast College is one of the few horticultural programs in the world which pollinates and cares for the Indonesian Sumatra “corpse” Flower which is a rare blooming plant that gets its unusual name from the particular aroma that it generates. The scent actually gets stronger as the plant gets closer to bloom, and which has been compared to the scent of human decompositions.

The strongest aroma it will ever produce being right before it blooms for the first time, which can take around ten years. After the initial bloom, the scent does get milder and blooms can occur around 3-5 years apart. So why endure the scent and long wait times just to see the flower bloom. The simple truth is that this is one of the most beautiful flowers in the world. The Magenta petals will rise out of the husk and then flow down to form a skirt around the tall flesh spire in the middle. Once the bloom occurs, which is usually in the evenings, it will only last for 24-48 hours. The bloom has been described as resembling a dancing lady with her skirts aswirl.


The blooming party will be between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. on Wednesday, June 28, 2017. Once the bloom begins to show visitors will be allowed to stay and view it until 10 p.m.


The last corpse flower that the school put on display for its bloom was in May of 2014 when more than 1000 visitors came to see the event. The flower on display at the time was “Little John” which at the time was 11 years old.


Visitation to the bloom is free for everyone, but visitors are encouraged to make a small donation of $3 to support the continued growth of the horticultural program at the college.


Orange Coast College is one of the largest community c0ollege in the state of California. The college enrolls over 25,000 students per year and has a very high conversion rate of student transferring to University of California and California State University system campuses. Many students also take the base skills that they learn at OCC and transfer to private colleges all over the country.


OCC has over 135 academic and career programs with almost half of the student body enrolled in the latter. OCC is a member of the Coast Community College District and offers classes in all four semester periods. The school is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. Those who would like to know more about the school, the horticultural program, or the corpse flower are encouraged to visit the school’s website at www.orangecoastcollege.edu or call the campus main switchboard at (714) 432-5072.