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White Water-lily Nymphaea odorata

Phonetic Spelling
NIM-fee-uh oh-dor-AY-ta
Description

Water lilies are a group of plants containing about 70 known species. They are either tropical or hardy and grow in water 3 inches to 3 foot deep with sandy loam to mucky soils. The spread is variable from 2 foot to about 20 foot. Larger plants need larger water gardens or ponds. Short ones do well growing in containers. They prefer non-moving water without fountains or currents. Most prefer full sun but some will tolerate some shade. The flowers are showy and usually fragrant with showy lily pads for leaves. Viviparous water lilies form plantlets attached to the mother plant.

Nymphaea odorata is a hardy American water lily and is one of the most common white lilies. It has large, very fragrant blooms and needs a large water garden in full sun to flower well.

 

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • spp. odorata
spp. odorata
Tags:
#bees#sun#showy flowers#water garden#fragrant flowers#heat tolerant#white flowers#container plant#wildlife plant#moths#large leaves#beneficial insects#water plant#wet sites#fast growing#spreading#nighttime garden#turtles#pond#waterlilies#native garden#night flowering waterlily#pollinator plant#mid-summer flowers#summer fruits#early summer flowers#late summer flowers#OBL#Coastal OBL#Piedmont Mountains OBL#wet soils tolerant#bird friendly#mammals#food source soft mast fruit#waterfowl#early fall flowers#early fall fruits#audubon
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • spp. odorata
spp. odorata
Tags:
#bees#sun#showy flowers#water garden#fragrant flowers#heat tolerant#white flowers#container plant#wildlife plant#moths#large leaves#beneficial insects#water plant#wet sites#fast growing#spreading#nighttime garden#turtles#pond#waterlilies#native garden#night flowering waterlily#pollinator plant#mid-summer flowers#summer fruits#early summer flowers#late summer flowers#OBL#Coastal OBL#Piedmont Mountains OBL#wet soils tolerant#bird friendly#mammals#food source soft mast fruit#waterfowl#early fall flowers#early fall fruits#audubon
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Nymphaea
    Species:
    odorata
    Family:
    Nymphaeaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Division
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Eastern North America
    Distribution:
    AK , AL , AR , AZ , CA , CO , CT , DC , DE , FL , GA , IA , ID , IL , IN , KS , KY , LA , MA , MD , ME , MI , MN , MO , MS , MT , NC , NE , NH , NJ , NM , NV , NY , OH , OK , OR , PA , RI , SC , SD , TN , TX , UT , VA , VT , WA , WI , WV Canada: BC , MB , NB , NS , ON , PE , QC , SK
    Wildlife Value:
    Pollen of the flowers attracts small bees. Lily pads provide a landing place for bees, shelter for pond life and shading helps prevent algae growth. Some mammals, turtles and birds eat the leaves and rhizomes and fruits. Moths visit flowers in the evening and pollinate them.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Native Plant
    Water Plant
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Spreading
    Growth Rate:
    Rapid
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Frequent Standing Water
    Moist
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    4a, 4b, 5a, 5b, 6b, 6a, 7b, 7a, 8b, 8a, 9b, 9a, 10a, 10b, 11b, 11a
  • Fruit:
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Fruit Description:
    Fruits mature underwater in the early fall.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Head
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Fragrant
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Fall
    Summer
    Flower Shape:
    Cup
    Flower Petals:
    more than 20 petals/rays
    Flower Size:
    > 6 inches
    Flower Description:
    Very fragrant pure white flowers with yellow stamens which are 6-9 inches and cup-shaped and bloom June-September.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Purple/Lavender
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Shape:
    Orbicular
    Leaf Margin:
    Sinuate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    > 6 inches
    Leaf Width:
    > 6 inches
    Leaf Description:
    10 in. across, and bright green on top and the underside is reddish or purplish.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Container
    Pond
    Riparian
    Landscape Theme:
    Native Garden
    Nighttime Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Water Garden
    Design Feature:
    Mass Planting
    Small groups
    Attracts:
    Bees
    Moths
    Pollinators
    Reptiles
    Small Mammals
    Songbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Heat
    Wet Soil