A bit too close and personal? A visitor at the San Francisco Conservatory of Flowers got a little too friendly with its smelliest attraction: The "corpse flower," ignoring warning signs not to touch it.
The conservatory’s livestream camera caught a man with a backpack reaching out to this famous flower — which only blooms for a few days — and touching its wilting petals, feeling them with his fingers, almost fondling them, and even getting another visitor to photograph him touching it. He then procedes to smell his fingers.
Needless to say, the conservatory is not happy: "The Conservatory is saddened to see a visitor not respecting the protective barrier that staff had erected around Terra and behaving in a way that jeopardizes not only the plant but other visitors' ability to experience something so fascinating and rare"
The video was posted on YouTube with the title “Jerk messes with SF Conservatory Corpse Flower." One commenter asked if the man was arrested for his actions. Conservatory volunteers have been guarding the flower, which received more than 7,000 visitors during its peak blooming period.
The plant, also known as Terra the Titan, earned its name from the aroma it omits once flowered. NPR described the stench as a cocktail of “fish, unwashed feet and rotting cabbage.”