Water lilies are commonly found in natural and in garden ponds around the world, from the tropics all the way north to Alaska. Many species have striking flowers that open during the morning and close up at night, then die after three days.
Water lilies consist of eight different genera and about 70 species with numerous cultivars and hybrids. Main types include hardy, tropical and night blooming lilies.
Water lily flowers are usually very showy. They range from an inch or two in diameter to the largest flower, Victoria amazonica, which reaches about 14 inches across.
Water lily flower colors range form white, pink, red, orange, yellow, blue and purple with variations and shades of each color.
The petals and sepals are usually in sets and multiples of six. Flowers are both male and female with six stamens and are usually cross pollinated.
Pollination is by beetles, moths or bees. After pollination, the stem curls up, pulling the flowers under the water where they die off and the seed develops.
- Fragrant Water-Lily
- The International Waterlily & Water Gardening Society
hardy water lily, victoria amazonica, tropical water lily
About this Author
Brian Albert has been in the publishing industry since 1999. He is an expert in horticulture, with a focus on aquatics and tropical plants like orchids. He has successfully run an aquatic plant business for the last five years. Albert's writing experience includes the Greater Portland Aquarium Society newsletter and politics coverage for a variety of online journals.