'U'Reeka' the corpse flower blooms at Mitchell Park Domes, attracting visitors with its stinky scent

NOW: ’U’Reeka’ the corpse flower blooms at Mitchell Park Domes, attracting visitors with its stinky scent

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) – Most flowers smell beautiful, but a big one at the Mitchell Park Domes is getting attention for the opposite reason.

Their corpse flower, appropriately named "U'Reeka" by staff, bloomed Monday afternoon.

"It smells, I would say, kind of like a dead mouse in your house," said Amanda Garchow, tropical horticulturalist at the Mitchell Park Domes.

"Weird, like rotting meat," said visitor Dyonne Werth.

The flower drew funky descriptions from those who rushed out Tuesday to get a whiff.

The domes have eight corpse flowers in their collection.

It's an endangered species that only grows in Sumatra, Indonesia.

"The fact that we have one to display here in Milwaukee, Wisconsin is really a unique and exciting experience for everybody," Garchow said.

Each corpse flower only blooms every eight to 10 years, and when it does, you can't miss it.

"It's supposed to smell like rotting flesh, and the reason it smells that way is to attract its pollinators, which are carrion flies and beetles," Garchow explained.

While the smell isn't too overpowering, it is certainly distinct.

"I wasn't smelling it, so someone said, 'well, take a really deep breath,'" said visitor Linda Guokas. "Like, okay, get over that fear of smelling something really bad that might make you sick."

The domes have seen five blooms in the last six years, and this one is earlier than expected.

"There's a lot of hype and a lot of anticipation, so when it happens it's really exciting," Garchow said.

"The flower is a wonderful thing, to bring people in the community together to see and smell something pretty weird," Werth said.

After the flower blooms, its smell is only noticeable for 24 to 48 hours, so the domes opened Tuesday with extended hours until 8 p.m.

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