02aug ~ American Lotus bud

This our first Lotus bud—American Lotus (Nelumbo lutea), a congeneric of the sacred Lotus of the Far East, although those are pink. Apparently it is more closely related to Sycamores than to water lilies.

We have a small pond, just one-tenth of an acre.  I’ve seen some Lotus in ponds a few miles from here, and I’ve admired them since I first saw them in Southern Illinois in the Pine Hills oxbow. I half-way thought about introducing them into the pond, but I was afraid they might cover the entire surface in a few years, so I’ve not taken any steps. 

But a few years ago I saw the first pads.  The seeds are large, and edible, and apparently transported by ducks, who don’t really seem to like our little pond, but clearly somebody had a fling a few years ago.  This is the first year of its sexual maturity and its first flower, that opened the next day.

It’s beautiful—such delicate colors against rich greens, even when lighted only by skylight as it is here. The opened flower is even better, but I’ll save that for next week, when things have lightened up for me.

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