Water Lily Overview
Nymphaea is a genus of deciduous, aquatic, perennial plants in the water lily family, Nymphaeaceae. They are commonly known as Water Lily (or Waterlily). The floating 'lilypad' leaves are rounded and heart-shaped, and the summer flowers are showy bowl- or cup-shaped. They come in a variety of sizes, colours and forms and are held on, or just above, the water on sturdy stems. These lovely exotic plants have been extensively cultivated as ornamental pond plants across the world - not only to look decorative but also to provide shade - preventing overgrowth of algae and shelter for aquatic wildlife. Water lilies need a water depth of between 30cm and 1.5m - depending on the variety - and a position in full sun. They can be frost tender or hardy. Nymphaea should be planted in aquatic baskets filled with aquatic compost or a low nutrient, stony garden topsoil, with gravel or pebbles on top, before submerging.