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Lotus flower

Lotus flower

Among the aquatic plants, the lotus flowers are certainly the ones that best represent their beauty and charm. Considered sacred flowers and of undeniable ornamental value, today these same flowers are variously used to decorate gardens and interior spaces. Whole plants are used outdoors, which are grown to decorate ponds and artificial ponds, while indoors dried seeds are used, which are used to enrich the floral arrangements of private rooms or public halls. The lotus flowers or lotus flowers, however, are plants that absolutely cannot be missing in an aquatic garden. Their presence, their intoxicating scent and the changing colors of the petals of these flowers are able to “light up” the gaze of visitors and the aesthetic result of a garden.

Features


Lotus flowers are aquatic plants belonging to the Nelumbonaceae family. Their botanical name is Nelumbo and although they include several varieties, they are divided into two main species: Nelumbo Lutea and Nelumbo Nucifera. The first is native to Central America, while the second, from Asia and Australia. Nelumbo Nucifera is the species considered sacred by ancient Indian religions and is commonly called “Flower of Asia”. Due to their extreme similarity with water lilies, for many years the lotus flowers have been classified within the Ninfeaceae family, although after some time and given their botanical peculiarities, they have been classified in the genus Nelumbo, which is now considered as the most correct classification. The lotus flowers are presented with large, simple petals, double or with special provisions. The petals of the plant are more than twenty, with colors ranging from white, to yellow, to pink and red. Other characteristics of lotus flowers, their intense scent and the ability not to absorb water on their petals, which clean themselves by themselves. These plants can be dwarf or giant. The former do not exceed twenty centimeters in height, while the latter can even exceed one meter in height, up to even two meters.

How they develop


Lotus flowers are hardy aquatic plants with very fast growth. If they find ideal conditions, they can develop within a few months. They prefer habitats made of stagnant and airless waters. The rhizomes of nelumbo plants grow in depths of between five and fifty centimeters. Some longer varieties can also develop on depths with greater depth. The flowers of these plants are hermaphrodites, that is, they can change sex periodically, fertilizing in turn the floral part of the opposite sex. The main methods of reproduction of the lotus flower are by seed and by division of the rhizomes. Both modes guarantee a fast reproduction of the plant, as long as it grows with the right soil and with the right temperature and quantity of water.

Uses


As mentioned in the second paragraph, the lotus flowers have only two main varieties: Nelumbo Lutea and Nelumbo Nucifera. The first variety is also used for food consumption. Some peoples consume the seeds and rhizomes. In Asia, petals are also eaten. Some peoples consume them raw, but it is better to cook them, in order to kill any bacteria and parasites that lurk on the plant. In the Western tradition, lotus flowers are used in gardening and for ornamental purposes. Some parts of these plants are also used in herbal medicine, but do-it-yourself is not recommended in this field, because, based on some studies, it seems that the petals of these flowers can have hallucinogenic effects.

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