stinking benjamin

Trillium Erectum, Sometimes Known As Stinking Benjamin Or Wake-Robin

Trillium erectum, commonly referred to as red trillium, wake-robin or purple trillium or Beth root is an early spring bloomer with an overpowering wet dog scent, found wild across Eastern North America forests.

This flower’s putrid aroma resembling decayed flesh attracts flies that pollinate it – just like Jack-in-the-pulpit and tulip poplar flowers, which bloom only briefly each spring.

Early Life and Education

Trillium erectum, more commonly known by its common names Stinking Benjamin or Wake-Robin, is an annual spring ephemeral plant whose flowers signal the arrival of spring. Their pungent aroma — often described as having similar characteristics to wet dog or old dirty socks — attracts pollinating insects that pollinate these flowers. They can be found from northern Georgia into Tennessee with red trillium being one of its more abundant varieties; other names for it include Purple Trillium and Red Trillium

Personal Life

Stinking Benjamin, a third-generation Quaker from Essex County in England known for textile production and protest movements at that time, had his training under master glovers before running away at 21 to join William Penn’s “Holy Experiment”. There, he quickly established himself as a forceful religious, political and social presence in Philadelphia.

Trillium erectum, commonly known as “Stinking Benjamin”, is a rare flower with the scent of wet dog. Found only in Eastern Highland Rim, Blue Ridge and Tennessee regions.

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