Part VI: The Water Lilly Garden

 
The Water Lilly Display garden © Britt Conley

The Water Lilly Display garden © Britt Conley

I love this garden for so many reasons.  First of which is that it’s in an unexpected location in the middle of the Longwood Garden’s  Conservatory courtyard just outside one of those doors people just open for sake of curiousity. I’ve heard more, “Oh Wow”s here than anywhere.

Two Water Lilly Blossoms © Britt Conley

Two Water Lilly Blossoms © Britt Conley

Pink Lilly Blossom © Britt Conley

Pink Lilly Blossom © Britt Conley

Blossoms © Britt Conley

Blossoms © Britt Conley

Basking in the Sunlight © Britt Conley

Basking in the Sunlight © Britt Conley

Once you start wandering this lovely square space, you begin to see all the varieties of water lillys: day, night, hardy, as well as lotuses and, of course, the famous Longwood giant-water-platters.

The giant-water-platters, also called Victoria Longwood Hybrid, are a site to behold.  They can grow up to 8 feet in diameter.  Although their size is the main event, the story behind them is even cooler.

The Pod © Britt Conley

The Pod © Britt Conley

The immense pads start as little furry looking seed pods that float above the water.

After the pod has opened © Britt Conley

After the pod has opened © Britt Conley

This round pod then opens and flattens in just 4 days.

The Leaf pad growing © Britt Conley

The Leaf pad growing © Britt Conley

In just three weeks the little floating leaf grows to six feet.  It’s furry curled edges become a soft leaf lip for the pad.  According to the Longwood Gardens website, “Gardeners raise, (these),  enormous hybrid water-platter from seed started in late February each year… Each fully grown leaf can reliably support 80 to 100 pounds if the weight is evenly distributed.”

The perfect picture © Britt Conley

The perfect picture © Britt Conley

Of course, the garden has huge photographic appeal for obvious reasons. I have yet to come here without seeing numerous people happily straining to get the perfect photo.

The side garden © Britt Conley

The side garden © Britt Conley

The Water Lilly Display is open from June through October each year and, as with all the gardens here, is a must see.

Lovely colors © Britt Conley

Lovely colors © Britt Conley

Well, there is so much more to show you.  I am only half way though this tour.  For this reason, Longwood is going to need a week two!  Look for it in Decmeber.  As for tomorrow, I’m sharing just some of the events they have here throughout the year.  Till Tomorrow…

Related posts:

  1. Part II: Longwood’s Water Gardens
  2. A Perfect Bloom for The Photo Garden Bee!
  3. The Topiary Garden at Longwood Gardens
  4. Longwood’s Idea Garden has given me my best ideas.
  5. The Chairs of Longwood Gardens

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