Alphabetical Plant Listing

Victoria amazonica (Amazon Water Lily)

Amazon Water Lily, Royal Water Lily, Giant Water Lily or Amazon Water-Platter


The largest waterlily in the world, Victoria amazonica (Amazon Water Lily) is an impressive tender aquatic perennial boasting huge, round, yellow green leaves, up to 4-6 ft. across (120-180 cm). They float on the water's surface on a long submerged stalk, 23–26 ft. (7–8 m). Flat at first, they develop a rim, 3-6 in. high (7-15 cm), at their edge. Strong and stiff, they can hold 65 pounds and at least 2-3 persons (!). The reddish-purple undersides of the leaves and the exterior of the rim have sharp prickles. In summer, double, night-blooming flowers, 9-12 in. across (22-30 cm) open a creamy white and then turn pink as they mature. The flowers bloom at dusk, closing by noon the following day, and last 2-3 days. When the blossom is still white in color and needs to be pollinated, it gives off a butterscotch and pineapple scent that attracts the beetles that pollinate the flower. The color of the lily changes however when it is pollinated to a pinky purple. Native to the shallow waters of the Amazon River basin, this rhizomatous Giant Water Lily is suitable for large water gardens, pools or ponds. The leaves are so massive in size that they tend they cover most of the surface of the water. This means that no sunlight can reach the rest of the water. Therefore no algae can grow, and with no food source, animals that feed on algae cannot exist.

  • Grows up to 6-12 in. tall (15-30 cm) and 15-20 ft. wide (450-600 cm).
  • Performs best in full sun in organically rich loams in quiet water, up to 12-36 in. deep (30-90 cm). Plants require water temperature of 85-90°F (29-32°C) during the growing season.
  • No serious pest or disease issues.
  • Propagate by seed.
  • In cold areas, containers may be brought indoors before first frost for overwintering.
  • Native to Guyana and tropical South America.

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Requirements

Hardiness 10 – 11
Plant Type Aquatic Plants, Perennials
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Summer (Mid,Late)
Height 6" – 1' (15cm – 30cm)
Spread 15' – 20' (4.5m – 6m)
Water Needs High
Maintenance Average
Soil Type Loam
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Poorly Drained
Characteristics Fragrant, Showy
Tolerance Wet Soil
Garden Uses Ponds and Streams, Rain Gardens, Water Gardens

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Natee Tongkaew, Shutterstock

While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.


Requirements

Hardiness 10 – 11
Plant Type Aquatic Plants, Perennials
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Summer (Mid,Late)
Height 6" – 1' (15cm – 30cm)
Spread 15' – 20' (4.5m – 6m)
Water Needs High
Maintenance Average
Soil Type Loam
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Poorly Drained
Characteristics Fragrant, Showy
Tolerance Wet Soil
Garden Uses Ponds and Streams, Rain Gardens, Water Gardens

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