Skip to main content

Man Comes Home to a Foul Smell and Discovers It’s One of His Houseplants Blooming

What in the “Stranger Things” is that?!

The Arena Media Brands, LLC and respective content providers to this website may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website.

Flowers are usually beautiful things, lovely for both their appearance and scent. It is why we have chosen to cultivate many of them, growing them to their full potential and keeping them around for everything that they bring into our lives.

But sometimes things don’t quite go that way, and sometimes flowers have a way of massively surprising us. So what would you do if you came home to your beautiful plant, newly bloomed, all of a sudden making your entire house smell like something died?


When Lee Kraus arrived at his home after work and smelt something weird, he did what any of us would do… go and investigate. The stench was strong, way stronger than what he would have expected from anything save the corpse of some small creature in his house, but that wasn’t it either.

He wandered around, trying to find where that dead creature was, only to find out that the source was something surprising. Not a body, but rather… It was a flower… a pretty flower, with vibrant colors and a large star-shape to its unfurled petal, but also one that, upon blooming, had apparently activated its secret power of stench. You see, Lee’s newly bloomed plant is actually a stapelia gigantea, and its smell certainly matches its ‘Stranger Things’ appearance.

And it is no surprise, this South African flower has earned itself many nicknames - going by the carrion plant, toad plant, and more. It is also a semi-close cousin to the much larger and more well known corpse flower. All should give you an idea of just how smelly this plant is. It should also give you some idea of exactly how Lee felt when he went home and all of a sudden faced that… unique scent.