Waterlilies for the Water Garden (Nymphaea)


All the varieties mentioned are propagated by division in early spring. Water-lilies normally flower in summer.

For large pools or broad expanses of water:

Area covered in a few years — 4 to 6 sq. ft.

Depth of water — 2 to 2-½ ft.


Colossea, large flowers, flesh-pink ageing to white. This is a long-season variety, blooming from May until the frosts.

Gladstoniana, perhaps the most beautiful white water-lily, exceptionally large blooms of purest white accentuated by a mass of golden stamens in the centre of each flower; plain green leaves, free flowering.

Hever White, large, tulip-shaped, milky-white flowers; a strong grower but less free flowering than some.

Nymphaea marliacea cornea, white flowers with rosy tinge at the base of the sepals and outer petals; blooms all summer.

N. tuberosa, pure white, cup-shaped, sweetly scented flowers. This species will stand deeper water than most. Root stock rhizomatous.


Attraction, large red blooms, 7 to 8 in. across, plain green leaves; a favourite free-flowering variety.

Goliath, long-petalled flowers, white overlaid with pink.

Leviathan, fragrant, soft pink flowers.

English: A flower of the 'Peach Glow' cultivar...

English: A flower of the 'Peach Glow' cultivar of hardy water-lily (genus Nymphaea), photographed just after rain at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden Türkçe: Brooklyn Botanic Garden'da yağmurdan sonra görüntülenmiş bir Nymphaea, Peach Glow. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Marguerite Laplace, very beautiful variety, rose-pink flowers, deeper in colour towards the edges of the petals.

N. marliacea rosea, similar to N.m. Carnea but with more pink in the flowers, very free. One of the most popular hardy lilies.


Colonel A. J. Welch, large star-shaped, soft canary-yellow flowers, carried just above the water surface. Not as free flowering as the yellow forms in the next section.

For medium-sized pools:

Area covered in a few years — 3 to 5 sq. ft.

Depth of water — 1-½ to 2 ft.


Gonnere, very squat flowers, semi-double, greenish-white with green sepals, in bloom on and off all summer.

Hermine, freely produced flowers standing 3 or 4 in. above the water.

N. marliacea albida, fragrant white flowers with pink flush on the sepals, from May until September. Foliage green above, purplish beneath.

N. vaginalis, a beautifully-shaped pure white flower, with gold stamens and green leaves.


N. brackleyi rosea, sweetly scented, clear rose flowers which tend to fade with age; very free flowering.

Escarboucle, the deep, blood-red flowers, which under good cultivation become very large (8 to 10 in.), have pointed petals which give the blooms a stellate appearance; extremely free flowering.

James Brydon, cup-shaped blooms which sit low in the water; the colour of a red paeony. Perhaps the most useful variety and one of the most free flowering.

Mrs. Richmond, very large flowers (8 to 9 in.) which are deep pink and deepen in colour as they age.

Rene Gerard, large, star-shaped, rich rose flowers flecked and overlaid with splashes of crimson; free flowering.

Rose Nymphe, large, open flowers 6 to 7 in. across, deep rose, very fragrant.

Wm. Falconer, deep crimson flowers with a velvety sheen which reflects the rich golden stamens; this is one of the darkest water-lilies and associates well with pinks and whites.


Nearly all the water-lilies in this section have especially attractive foliage, the green being heavily mottled or blotched with maroon and crimson.

J. C. N. Forestier, flowers stand clear of the water and are soft copper-rose which intensifies with age.

N. marliacea chromatella, beautiful cup-shaped, primrose-yellow flowers; fragrant and very free-flowering.

N. moorei, very similar to N. marliacea chromatella but the foliage is more spotted than blotched.

Sunrise, the richest yellow variety, is a clear sunshine colour; the flowers are more stellate than the others in this section.

For small pools, tubs, rock garden pockets and prefabricated pools:

Surface area covered — approximately 3 sq. ft.

Depth of water — 1 to 1-½ ft.


Albatross, large, star-shaped flowers, pure white with conspicuous golden anthers.

N. odorata, small, fragrant flowers freely produced from early June until October.

N. pygmaea alba, small white flowers with bright green sepals, 1 to 2 in. across, green leaves. Does best in very shallow water, 6 to 12 in.


N. caroliniana, delicate rose-pink flowers with yellow stamens; sweetly scented.

N.c. Rosea, an improved form with deeper rose flowers.

N. ellisiana, darkest in colour of the smaller-growing water-lilies with garnet-red blooms; very free flowering.

Fire Crest, deep pink, fragrant flowers, with red-tipped stamens; very handsome but not particularly free flowering.

N. froebeli, rich wine-crimson flowers; one of the most popular for tub gardens and small pools.

N. laydekeri lilacea, soft pink flowers. Both this form and N.l. Purpurata are frequently used for prefabricated pools and tub gardens as they tolerate shallow water and bloom freely all summer.

N.l. Purpurata, rosy-carmine flowers, very similar to N.l. Lilacea.

Pink Opal, flowers stand clear of the water and are deep coral-pink with pointed petals, which give them a starry appearance.


All in this section are characterized by mottled foliage — maroon-red or chocolate on green.

Aurora, very variable variety, the flowers opening to an apricot-yellow, changing to bronze the next day and copper-red on the third.

Graziella, pretty shade of copper-red with bright orange stamens.

Indiana, another form which shows great variation in the flowers, opens orange-red and deepens to bright copper-red. Also suitable for medium-sized pools.

N. odorata sulphurea, small, fragrant, starry flowers, pretty shade of canary-yellow.

Paul Hariot, opens delicate apricot-yellow and changes with age to orange-pink and finally almost red.

N. pygmaea helvola, soft yellow flowers beautifully shaped, the size of a penny; leaves handsomely blotched with red. The smallest water-lily and a veritable gem for rock garden pools, it can also be grown in a bowl on a sunny windowsill.

Sioux, rich yellow passing to a delightful shade of reddish-copper.

Solfatare, star-shaped flowers, yellow flushed with rose, not very free-flowering.

01. June 2012 by Dave Pinkney
Categories: Aquatic Plants, Water Features, Water Garden Plants | Tags: , , , , | Comments Off on Waterlilies for the Water Garden (Nymphaea)


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