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Water Gardens: Wooo Hooo! Lotus Seeds Germinating!

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Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

April 23, 2011
6:09 AM

Post #8514949

I found a great site with pictures on how to start lotus seeds and followed the instructions - Here is the link:

http://www.faculty.sbc.edu/simpson/Lotus/index.htm

I started my seeds on Tuesday, the 19th. I took my dremel with a cutting blade, scored them then put them in a jar. I was changing the water twice a day and noticed on the 21st that some had started to split. Yesterday I saw little green shoots start to appear in the splits and today they are coming out!

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Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

April 23, 2011
6:15 AM

Post #8514960

Once I saw the split i went out and bought a small tub. This morning I dumped some soil from the back yard in it and filled with water in hopes it will clarify by the time I'm ready to plant the seeds. After doing research I read where clayey sandy soil was the best which is exactly what we have here. I'll probably change the water a few times before I plant the seedlings!

This is so exciting! I'm also going to start my aquatic morning glory seeds (Ipomoea aquatica) today as well.

This message was edited Apr 23, 2011 8:16 AM

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Carolyn22
Athens, PA
(Zone 5b)

April 23, 2011
6:48 AM

Post #8515011

I am interested in watching your progress. Please post as you go - I have some that I want to start as well.
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

April 23, 2011
6:53 AM

Post #8515023

The link above its great .. it's very specific. I was amazed at how quickly they germinated!

I was able to get some papyrus at a local plant swap so the finished garden will have lotus, papyrus and morning glory in it.
avianut
Omaha, NE
(Zone 5a)

April 24, 2011
4:17 AM

Post #8516834

Hey there Xer- thanks! that is a great link! I may even try it!
bellieg
Virginia Beach, VA

April 24, 2011
4:31 AM

Post #8516849

I read it too and will try it after this years flowers. i normally just throw them away. It reminds me of Thailand and shanghai where there were hundreds of lotus in buckets along the roads. Thanks for the link.

Belle
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

April 24, 2011
5:46 AM

Post #8516956

Yesterday afternoon I noticed the tub was still terribly muddy and frothy. It occurred to me that I have a little stream behind the house so I dumped out the muddy mess and dug up some dirt from the stream. I washed the water twice and was delighted to see that it cleared up!

Since I have 4 seeds out of 5 that germinated, I think I will go get another tub and plant 2 seeds to a tub rather than crowd them because after seeing the picture on the link with the roots all tangled I was concerned they probably would not take to being divided at an early age when I'm ready to put them in their final home.

This message was edited Apr 24, 2011 7:51 AM

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Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

April 24, 2011
5:50 AM

Post #8516961

And here is a picture of the seedlings just 5 days after starting them. They've grown so much in just 1 24 hour period and the shoots have almost doubled in length from yesterday! I'll give them one more day I think then plant them tomorrow.

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Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

April 24, 2011
3:32 PM

Post #8517985

Well I went to do a water change this afternoon and discovered 2 of the seedlings were just breaking the surface of the water. This was kind of disconcerting and I was worried that once the shoots hit air that rapid changes will occur in cell differentiation and root formation so I immediately planted the seeds in the "Lotus Kindergarten". I got another tub and more dirt from the stream and planted 2 seeds in one about 1 inch deep with about 3 inches of water and the other 3 seeds of which one has not germinated yet in the other tub.

This picture is just 9 hours later than the one above!

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Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

April 24, 2011
3:35 PM

Post #8517992

Once I got those planted I then got 5 of the Aquatic MG seeds, nicked them and put them in the same little jar I used for the Lotus .. I was glad to see no floaters. I hope they go as fast as the lotus! The jar I used was from pimentos. It's a round squat jar about 3 inches tall and perfect for starting aquatic seeds and great for photography since it's shallow. I knew I was saving it for a reason .. just didn't know the reason until the lotus seeds arrived!


This message was edited Apr 24, 2011 5:37 PM

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mittsy
Cocoa Beach, FL
(Zone 11)

April 24, 2011
3:41 PM

Post #8517998

I have a friend that lives next to a river. Her dock is fairly close to the surface of the water. Her husband cut circles out of the dock and inserted pots in the holes. As there are drainage holes in the bottom of her ceramic pots, she has a ready supply of fresh water. I was so impressed with her tiny water gardens. Some had tropical water lilies that were blooming. Any way you could do something similar with your stream?
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

April 24, 2011
4:36 PM

Post #8518096

I could if it was easy access and on my property. I have to climb over a chain link fence to get to it and it's on county owned property.
mittsy
Cocoa Beach, FL
(Zone 11)

April 25, 2011
3:58 AM

Post #8518867

Too bad.
bellieg
Virginia Beach, VA

April 25, 2011
4:18 AM

Post #8518889

Can you get a pump to siphon the water? That would be neat!!!
flowerehj
Saint Cloud, FL
(Zone 9b)

April 25, 2011
10:50 AM

Post #8519283

That idea is really swell, but if you have water gardens directly feeding of a stream, you have to be really careful about fertilizer getting into the natural waterways. Here in FL it is a big problem; even with such pristine waters such as spring fed streams and rivers.
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

April 25, 2011
11:23 AM

Post #8519359

The water cleared up enough after planting the seedlings yesterday .. Now comes the waiting for them to break the surface. Here is a picture of one .. it was really hard to focus on it because the autofocus on the camera kept wanting to focus on the surface of the water.

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Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

April 25, 2011
11:23 AM

Post #8519361

And some of the aquatic morning glory look like they are starting to sprout.

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Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

April 26, 2011
6:43 AM

Post #8521242

They have all broken the surface of the water today. You can clearly see now the cell differentiation between what will become a leaf and the stem.

My question is, do I need to change the water and how often? What about adding water as it evaporates?

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ardesia
Saint Helena Island, SC
(Zone 9a)

April 26, 2011
6:52 AM

Post #8521255

I've never grown seeds X, congratulations! In my pots of growing lotus tubers however, I do not ever change the water. I do add fresh as it evaporates, especially during the hottest parts of the summer when the large leaves transpire large amounts of water on a daily basis.
Lotus do not have to be in large pots but I have found that in our hot climate, the larger the pot it is in the easier it is to maintain. Lowe's has these black plastic pots that are used for whiskey barrel liners that are very reasonable and they are a good size.
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

April 26, 2011
7:01 AM

Post #8521274

Thanks Ardesia, these guys are in the Lotus Kindergarten at the moment .. once they start forming tubers I'll be moving them to a larger tub about 3.5 feet tall. I'm just astonished at how fast things are going .. it was just a week ago today that I nicked them and stuck them in water!
Carolyn22
Athens, PA
(Zone 5b)

April 26, 2011
7:13 AM

Post #8521299

X -

I appreciate your posting as you go along. This is the stage where I lost mine when I tired them previously. I had thought perhaps if I started them and could put them right outside, that might help. I started mine during the middle of winter last time.

Carolyn
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

April 26, 2011
7:56 AM

Post #8521393

You're welcome .. it's a learning experience for me.
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

April 27, 2011
5:45 AM

Post #8523657

One of the shoots is now laying on top of the water. I'm thinking it's probably about to unroll its first leaf!

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ardesia
Saint Helena Island, SC
(Zone 9a)

April 27, 2011
6:57 AM

Post #8523797

WOo Hoo, this is going so fast. The first leaves will lie flat on the water and later leaves will stand up above the surface.
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

April 27, 2011
7:16 AM

Post #8523822

I wish terrestrial plants were this fast!
drsaul
Hereford, TX
(Zone 7a)

April 28, 2011
5:08 PM

Post #8527047

They are...They are called weeds! LOL

Darin
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

April 28, 2011
5:24 PM

Post #8527089

Lol.

Haven't updated today because they are just sitting there now .. they've gone from hyperdrive to impulse power.
drsaul
Hereford, TX
(Zone 7a)

April 28, 2011
5:29 PM

Post #8527100

Mine have done that also, but mine are large tubers. I'm hoping the wind will calm down before they put up their first aerial leaves tho.
ardesia
Saint Helena Island, SC
(Zone 9a)

April 29, 2011
3:35 AM

Post #8527773

Mine get direct blasts, 45 mph this week alone, and I have never seen any damage. These are really strong plants.
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

April 30, 2011
1:45 PM

Post #8530608

Finally! Last night the leaves started to unfurl!

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Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

May 1, 2011
7:15 AM

Post #8531935

I've also noticed that new shoots are growing from the base of the plants. So, I'm wondering, if the first leaves that the lotus puts out are totally unlike the true leaves are they correctly called cotyledons? Are multiple cotyledons the norm for water plants?
realsis

June 17, 2011
12:43 PM

Post #8636675

i just love to grow lotus! before you know it they will be huge! im waiting for my second year lotus to bloom now!

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Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

June 17, 2011
2:58 PM

Post #8636901

Both my containers are stuffed with the round leaves and still putting them out! I'm going to bring both containers in during winter and keep them on heating pads to see if I can speed things up a bit.

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Lily_love

Lily_love
Central, AL
(Zone 7b)

June 19, 2011
6:50 PM

Post #8641173

X, I've some lotus in a half-whiskey barel tub. They survived the winter even when the tub froze. No special treatment during the winter is needed, mine bloom faithfully every spring. Your seedling look so healthy. Have you fertilize them?
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

June 19, 2011
7:19 PM

Post #8641239

No, I haven't fed them .. what should I use? I'm hoping if I keep them growing through winter they will bloom faster.

Lily_love

Lily_love
Central, AL
(Zone 7b)

June 19, 2011
7:30 PM

Post #8641274

I bought aquatic fertilizer from HomeDepot. They come in a little thumb-size tablets which I've to press them into the soil early in the growing season. They worked real well. My blooms just subsided, and seeds are forming. I'm getting ready to fertilize them once again to aid the seeds formation.

I don't know whether or not what you're doing will speed its maturity. I got mine as a blooming specimen. I haven't experience with raising Lotus seeds so I can't make any comment there.
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

June 19, 2011
9:07 PM

Post #8641481

Well it seems if they go dormant in winter that keeping them growing through the winter would speed up the time they would produce flowers.
ardesia
Saint Helena Island, SC
(Zone 9a)

June 20, 2011
5:32 AM

Post #8641920

One of my friends uses dunks rather than mosquito fish in her lotus pots so she figures chemicals can't hurt anything. She has started used plain Miracle Gro in her pots and her lotus are gorgeous. She estimates the gallons of water and uses the appropriate amount of MG.

X, I do think Lotus have a "season", although the water is still quite warm, the leaves on mine start to turn brown in the fall just like a deciduous tree. I have a feeling they need a resting period. I would start feeding them so the tubers have an opportunity to get larger.
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

June 20, 2011
6:57 AM

Post #8642066

Thanks for the info .. I'll do just that today .. I already have the miracle grow.

Lily_love

Lily_love
Central, AL
(Zone 7b)

June 20, 2011
7:05 AM

Post #8642078

I used the regular rose fertilizer on Lotus one year...the side effect was promote green algea growth in the water. Otherwise, it served its purpose.
nymegen
Auburn, NH
(Zone 5a)

June 23, 2011
7:49 AM

Post #8648773

I just love lotus but had never heard about the aquatic morning glories.Does anyone know if and where I would find seeds available ?
realsis

June 24, 2011
5:52 AM

Post #8650998

hi. you should start feeding the lotus after the 4th leaf has emerged. i highly recomend highland rim fertizilizer. it is espically made for lotus and water lillies. its ratio is 10:26:10 to give the extra help with blooms and green leaves. if you notice the ratio of these plant tabs has a higer number than usual fertiziler. my lotus and lillies thrive on it. its very convienet to just push the tab into the soil. lotus are heavy feeders and you can get a bag of this highland rim fairly inexpensive. i order mine off the internet. it ships fast and its good stuff! like ive said its specially formulated just for lotus and lillies! i shop around online and find it for the best price! your lotus will thank you for it :) good luck and happy gardening!
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

June 24, 2011
6:28 AM

Post #8651050

I finally got some aquatic MG's to germinate and grow .. Hopefully they will put out some flowers and I can get more seeds.
phicks
Lakeland, FL
(Zone 9b)

June 26, 2011
11:59 AM

Post #8655782

there easy to get to flower X but hard to get seeds . Paul

dyzzypyxxy

dyzzypyxxy
Sarasota, FL
(Zone 9b)

June 28, 2011
5:13 PM

Post #8660788

Just thought I'd chime in on the dormancy question. My dwarf lotus are in a little south-facing pond in my entry. The water temp goes down into the 50's in winter (a normal winter here, that is) and the last two winters the water dropped into the 40's. The lotus plants disappear completely once the water temp drops below about 70, and don't wake up until the water temp rises into the 70's again. I can hurry them up if I pull their tub out of the pond and put it in a warmer, sunnier corner. But then I have to wait for the pond to warm up before I can put them back. It's not worth it. They get lots of leaves, but never bloom until the weather gets really hot. I have my first flower bud coming this week.

That being said, I'm pretty sure lotus grow in equatorial climates where the water never gets cold as well. Don't know if they go dormant in places like Egypt or not. If you keep them warm all winter, I'd guess you need to keep them in the sun, and keep giving them fertilizer, too. Leaves make tubers, tubers make leaves and flowers. Hard to say if they will bloom sooner with that treatment or not. Maybe keep a couple in the warm, and let a couple go dormant, see what works?

If I had to guess, you'll get flowers either way next summer as long as you have tubers by this fall. Grow lots of leaves! Elaine ps. I use the aquatic fert tabs, too. Lotus are heavy feeders.

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Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

June 28, 2011
6:46 PM

Post #8660986

Thanks for the info .. I've got two tubs full so I'll keep one going and see what happens.

Lily_love

Lily_love
Central, AL
(Zone 7b)

June 28, 2011
6:51 PM

Post #8660996

Ah, I just know someone, a member of DG from India, Dinu perhaps Dinu can help answer the questions you've raised above. Let me shot him an email. Or would you care to do that? Since this was your question? Great question by the way. I love your pond as well.
tropicbreeze
noonamah
Australia

June 28, 2011
8:31 PM

Post #8661255

There are a number of types of "Lotus". Our native one, Nelumbo nucifera, grows all year. They don't have tubers, there's only 'runners' with leaves and flowers arising from nodes along the runners.

From what I understand "Egyptian Lotus" is actually a waterlily and not a lotus.

Then there's the Lotus genus with several species. It's these that I think go through the winter dormancy. It's in the genetic make up of the plants so you can't avoid that happening. About the best you'll be able to do is extend the growing period beyond your normal climatic conditions, up to a point.

But definitely, you first need to find out which one you have.
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

June 29, 2011
5:54 AM

Post #8661682

Bummer - traded for some Lotus seeds .. that's the only name attached to them. Being totally new to water plants I didn't think to ask what kind.

ardesia
Saint Helena Island, SC
(Zone 9a)

June 29, 2011
7:08 AM

Post #8661789

You are fine X, water lilies do not make the same kind of large, hard seeds like you had. Also, the leaves you pictured are lotus - Nelumbo's.

dyzzypyxxy

dyzzypyxxy
Sarasota, FL
(Zone 9b)

June 29, 2011
9:38 AM

Post #8662043

You may be able to ID which lotus you have by the flowers. Can you ask the person you traded with what color the flowers were, and how tall the plant was?

The leaves are all pretty much the same, except for size. Some lotus get huge - 7 ft. tall leaf stems - and others, like my dwarf one, only get about 2 feet. You should know that by the end of summer.

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realsis

June 29, 2011
10:53 AM

Post #8662163

yes you should be able to tell weather or not its a nuciferia or lutea by the flowers. nuciferia is usually pink or white. lutea is yellow. also i believe if you look it up the flowers appearance is different also. so when the plant blooms you will know if its the nuciferia or the lutea (american lotus). keep showing how its doing with pictures! they grow so fast and before you know it it will be huge with aerial leaves! how exciting! i love growing lotus and have about fifteen plants of my own in two lotus bogs. i am waiting for my first flowers this year! it should bloom soon. i believe where i live they bloom in july and aug. i keep looking for the buds to come! good luck with your lotus. keep us posted.

dyzzypyxxy

dyzzypyxxy
Sarasota, FL
(Zone 9b)

June 29, 2011
1:07 PM

Post #8662407

Have you thought of putting each plant in its own tub? If they are a large variety of lotus, they will be overcrowded very quickly, and possibly stunt each other if you leave them all together. Better do this soon, before they get too entangled with each other. Be extremely careful transplanting, though. The roots are somewhat fragile so move them gently with your hands, not tools.

Interestingly, when I looked up my dwarf hybrid in the DG Plant Files, it says it is a hybrid of Nelumbo nucifera! So are several other well-known hybrids in there. But they do make tubers and go dormant here. I wonder if the Australian variety never makes tubers because the warm climate keeps it growing and producing leaves all year. Tropicbreeze, do your native lotus bloom all year as well?
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

June 29, 2011
1:50 PM

Post #8662490

Well I just got an email back from the person I traded with .. they are nelumbo nucifera. No cultivar was mentioned.

There are two plants in each tub .. I keep sticking my fingers down in the sand but don't really feel any tubers, just root. I'm going to keep them where they are until they reach the 2nd stage then I'll probably transplant them into larger tubs.

Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

June 29, 2011
1:56 PM

Post #8662502

I keep forgetting to ask .. should I remove the dead leaves or leave them?
ardesia
Saint Helena Island, SC
(Zone 9a)

June 29, 2011
3:54 PM

Post #8662686

I remove them, otherwise they will just eventually sink and rot.
tropicbreeze
noonamah
Australia

June 30, 2011
6:30 AM

Post #8663718

"Tropicbreeze, do your native lotus bloom all year as well?"

I don't think so. During the wet season when water levels rise they just seem to produce leaves.

You need to be careful with trimming leaves. One way to get rid of Lotus is to cut the leaves off below the water. A rot seems to get into the stem and travels down into the root system. Let them die off first or cut them off above the water.

Nelumbo nucifera in habitat.

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tropicbreeze
noonamah
Australia

June 30, 2011
6:32 AM

Post #8663719

The flower

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Lily_love

Lily_love
Central, AL
(Zone 7b)

June 30, 2011
6:43 AM

Post #8663737

Tropicbreeze, what fantastic shot of the Lotus field! It's beautiful. And the very important point you've made about stem rot, if it were cut below the water level. Thank you.
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

June 30, 2011
6:57 AM

Post #8663764

Oh that is pretty! When my sister came to visit we went to Cypress Gardens and they had a cypress swamp full of lotus .. or maybe they were water lilies.

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MerryMary
Ocoee (W. Orlando), FL
(Zone 9b)

June 30, 2011
7:22 AM

Post #8663798

Those are water lilies, but beautiful none the less!
phicks
Lakeland, FL
(Zone 9b)

June 30, 2011
7:26 AM

Post #8663804

i Fertilize all my water plants with Jobe stiks have for years even with fish in the pond X Most Lotus need a Dormant period. if you try to keep theam growing all year may weaken the plant.am growing some pink ones ill be glad to send you one at the end of summer . paul
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

June 30, 2011
7:35 AM

Post #8663817

Thanks Paul! Great to see you back online.
ardesia
Saint Helena Island, SC
(Zone 9a)

June 30, 2011
8:01 AM

Post #8663863

X, I remember seeing lots of the native lotus (N. lutea) in the Cooper River tributaries. They have yellow flowers which stand above the water surface. .
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

June 30, 2011
8:03 AM

Post #8663866

Really? Wow! I didn't know lotus were native to America .. I certainly have a lot to learn!

dyzzypyxxy

dyzzypyxxy
Sarasota, FL
(Zone 9b)

June 30, 2011
9:42 AM

Post #8664079

Here's a link http://plants.ifas.ufl.edu/node/10 with info on the American Lotus. Nelumbo Lutea

If you click on the little thumbnails, there are pictures of big swaths of these, very impressive. But unless you have a pretty big pond, I wouldn't plant them. They'll take over! Hardy even up into Canada. I'd like to smell the air around those lakes when the flowers are in bloom.
gessieviolet
Saluda, SC
(Zone 8a)

August 7, 2011
10:09 PM

Post #8743539

Xeramtheum, your original post inspired me to see if I could get lotus to grow from seeds. Like you I am amazed at germination speed. I have run into a problem of my leaves turning black, even though the plants seem to put putting on new leaves. Did you run into this problem by any chance?

I can find any answer as to what is causing it in any sources I have located..

http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/t/1205325/

This message was edited Aug 8, 2011 12:10 AM
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

August 8, 2011
4:32 AM

Post #8743683

I've not had that problem and really can't tell you what might be going on. Mine are still at the coin stage putting out leaves like crazy .. I remover ones that are totally brown and that's about it .. I haven't fertilized mine because my tubs have turned out to be regular watering holes for birds, opossums and an occasional mud dauber which delights me to no end because that means the water is healthy and not stagnant.

This message was edited Aug 8, 2011 6:33 AM
plantsforpeg
Ventress, LA
(Zone 8b)

August 17, 2011
12:10 PM

Post #8761544

How interesting. We have one huge water lily in our small pond that blooms each day. I too have been buying the aquatic fertilizer. Someone, please list some of the other fertilizers that can be used with Koi in the pond.

I have been reading about propagating my water lily by tieing the bloom with gauze and letting it sink to the bottom for a few days. I'd like to give it a try before the summer ends. Has anyone had success with this method?
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

August 17, 2011
12:15 PM

Post #8761555

That's a new one to me!
plantsforpeg
Ventress, LA
(Zone 8b)

August 17, 2011
12:23 PM

Post #8761571

I read this in the Am. Horticultural Society's Plant Propagation book. Of course, there are a couple more steps that I don't remember without going back to the book.
ardesia
Saint Helena Island, SC
(Zone 9a)

August 17, 2011
2:41 PM

Post #8761724

Birds, possoms and raccoons regularly drink from my fertilized water features with no ill effects. Heck, they drink from the foulest of puddles and seem to do just fine. I do provide fresh clean water for the birds but they are not fussy about where they drink.
Carolyn22
Athens, PA
(Zone 5b)

August 18, 2011
5:07 AM

Post #8762507

Peg

I fertilize my waterlilies with the Laguna year long fertilizer spikes - it only has to be done once and it doesn't hurt my fish or the birds, squirrels or anything else that drinks from my pond.

http://www.fosterandsmithaquatics.com/1/1/641-laguna-plant-grow-fertilizer-spikes.html

I have never tried the propogation method you mentioned - however, early each spring, the waterlilies are pulled from the bottom of the pond and divided with a sharp knife. Make sure you have a growth point in each division and before you know it, you will have more waterlilies than you'll know what to do with.

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Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

August 18, 2011
5:11 AM

Post #8762510

So mine are sitting in tubs .. from what I've been reading I should just leave them where they are and let them freeze over? They are still at the coin stage but a few are starting to grow above the water line.
Carolyn22
Athens, PA
(Zone 5b)

August 18, 2011
5:15 AM

Post #8762516

I would think so, but not positive - can some be split and brought inside for the winter?

My initial thought is that is how they often propogate themselves and that your babies should be fine.

I do believe that lotus are hardy in your zone.

plantsforpeg
Ventress, LA
(Zone 8b)

August 18, 2011
6:18 AM

Post #8762710

Carolyn, Laguna would be perfect for me instead of the monthly schedule that may fall off course every now and then.

dyzzypyxxy

dyzzypyxxy
Sarasota, FL
(Zone 9b)

August 18, 2011
8:09 AM

Post #8762907

X, I would give those little lotus plants of yours a bit of fertilizer to work on before the end of summer. The leaves you grow now will make your tubers for next year, so it will benefit the long term outlook for you to make lots more leaves now. Lotus grow really F A S T and big. Your little plants should be making bigger leaves by now, jmho. Do you still have several plants in the same tub? I think you might see a dramatic surge of growth if you give them some fert!

I always like to consider what would be happening if my plants were growing out in the wild in their natural habitat. Your lotus would have 'natural' fertilizer if they were in a wild pond - fish poop and leafy materials in the bottom muck. They don't have any of that in your tub.

I also fertilize the lotus and water lilies in my little pond and have healthy fish, lots of birds, squirrels, possums and raccoons drinking there. I'm using the monthly tablets by Lily Gro just because I like the flexibility - and you do push them down into the pots, so the fert is not released directly into the water. I have a very small water lily, and another that is larger, plus my lotus is a 'dwarf' variety all in containers in a 750gal. pond. As the water temp changes, their growth rates also change so I can adjust the fert dosage accordingly.

You can get the tabs in a small amount from most nurseries that have water plants. Or order it online if you want a larger amount to keep for next season. Go easy at first, maybe just one or two tabs in the tub and see what happens. You could give them a light dose now, and then if you get encouraging results, give them a bit more in September.

Here's my 'Baby Doll' lotus blooming. It has leaves up to 8" across standing about 18" above the water. I started with two tiny tubers in March.

Thumbnail by dyzzypyxxy
Click the image for an enlarged view.

Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

August 19, 2011
7:45 AM

Post #8764564

I'm feeding mine with miracle grow since I have no fish.
beckygardener
(Becky) in Sebastian, FL
(Zone 10a)

August 19, 2011
8:42 AM

Post #8764654

X - Great thread on growing Lotus from seeds as well as helpful information from everyone posting!

There are some interesting information links about growing Lotus on the Internet. My favorite website links are these two:

Lotus:
http://www.victoria-adventure.org/lotus/lotus_main.html
Lotus articles:
http://www.victoria-adventure.org/lotus/articles_index.html

And here are some interesting videos:
How to plant a lotus:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ow1VbBds84&feature=related
Fertilizing Lotus:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5CX6yIaO7Ks&NR=1

I am trying the Miracle Gro since I also don't have fish in my water pots.

I finally got blooms this week from one of my water pots. I believe this cultivar is called "Red Scarf". My other pot still hasn't bloomed.

May I make a comment on fertilizing. The lotus do need a rest period. If you fertilize too late in the season and then the temps drop, you could get root rot. That happened to me a few years ago and I lost all my Lotus. Most fertilizer tabs or MiracleGro last about a month or so. So figure out a month and a half before your typical cool weather starts moving in. Also if you try to grow them indoors, they may not do well as they really need sunlight. Mine have been out in the freezing weather the past 2 years and came back in the Spring. So they do seem to be pretty hardy if you can move them to a sheltered place where it might be just a little warmer. The water in my pots froze over solid with ice and the lotus came back despite that. But the freeze didn't last but a few days, so don't know if that had anything to do with it. I do know people who move them into their greenhouse or garage and just let them go dormant right there in their water pots. Drag them out when the weather warms up and they come right back!

Thumbnail by beckygardener
Click the image for an enlarged view.

Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

August 19, 2011
8:57 AM

Post #8764670

Actually I quit feeding everything in August, water and terrestrial plants. I'll probably just move the tubs with the lotus in them next to the house and forget about them til next spring.

Thanks for the links .. I'll be checking them out more in depth later on.
beckygardener
(Becky) in Sebastian, FL
(Zone 10a)

August 19, 2011
9:16 AM

Post #8764696

That's the perfect time to stop fertilizing everything!

I don't grow mine in a pond. They can indeed become invasive if they are left to grow wild. I have two water containers that I grow one or two lotus in each pot. I also remove the leaves above the surface of the water when they turn brown. And I have mine growing in the Walmart Special Kitty Litter, not dirt. These plants seem pretty hardy if they get off to a good start. Yours look great, X! Amazing that they did so well growing them from seed. That is NOT an easy feat! Commendable, indeed! It took me two years to get blooms on my small tubers, so I would figure the same for you. Maybe towards the end of the growing season next year you'll get your first blooms! Congrats!

Thumbnail by beckygardener
Click the image for an enlarged view.

plantsforpeg
Ventress, LA
(Zone 8b)

August 19, 2011
9:29 AM

Post #8764718

I enjoy the pics so...
How high a temperature can a lotus in a pot take? Our weater has been 100 for a month to 6 weeks now and I am wondering if the water would get too hot if placed in full sun.
beckygardener
(Becky) in Sebastian, FL
(Zone 10a)

August 19, 2011
9:51 AM

Post #8764747

:-)

As long as you keep adding water as it evaporates, I think it would be fine. Mine are in those light grey pots because mine are in full sun all day long. (14 hours a day in late June!) They need sunlight to thrive along with fertilizer since they are heavy feeders. Mine don't even start waking up until the water reaches 75 degrees. So my guess is they don't mind warm water at all. If you are worried about it, transfer them to a lighter color pot or spray paint your pot a light color.
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

August 19, 2011
10:45 AM

Post #8764838

I've kept mine in full sun and the water in the tubs have gotten to 97 degrees with no detrimental effects that I could see to the plants.
plantsforpeg
Ventress, LA
(Zone 8b)

August 19, 2011
11:42 AM

Post #8764935

Thanks for all the info. Now I know "the rest of the story".
Appreciate everyone.
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

October 28, 2011
7:31 AM

Post #8866824

Well I'm disgusted .. after feeling around the bottom of one of the tubs with the lotus in it and not finding any tubers I dumped the whole thing and this is what I found. Now what do I do with this?

Thumbnail by Xeramtheum
Click the image for an enlarged view.

dyzzypyxxy

dyzzypyxxy
Sarasota, FL
(Zone 9b)

October 28, 2011
8:04 AM

Post #8866856

X don't give up yet! I would put those back in a shallow pot with water, put it in a garage, or some other cool, dark place and haul it out into the sunlight in Feb. when it's warming up again. If you get leaf shoots once the water warms, you're golden. If not, start some more seeds, or order a tuber from a nursery. Having never started a lotus from seed, I really don't know how long it takes for them to make a tuber. But those white roots certainly are still alive, so they might still produce good leaf growth next year.

Did you get lots of big green leaves before they started to go dormant? For reference, my dwarf lotus has leaves from 5in. to 8 in. across, but bigger types can have leaves 2ft. across. I probably had 25 leaves in my tub from 2 tubers. They are just going dormant now.

Maybe it takes two years' growth of big healthy leaves to make a tuber - that would explain why the water garden nurseries charge so much for their tubers. Note! They ONLY ship lotus tubers in early spring before the shoots have started up because the shoots are so delicate that they easily break off when shipped. Tubers are very fragile, too. So be careful if you investigate your other pot.
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

October 28, 2011
8:21 AM

Post #8866883

It stayed in the coin stage and the other pot is still producing the lily pad leaves. I might just dump this in the other pot and stick it in the utility room.
ardesia
Saint Helena Island, SC
(Zone 9a)

October 28, 2011
9:13 AM

Post #8866944

Those large white roots are the young tubers. Do like Elaine says and get them back into the mud ASAP.
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

October 28, 2011
9:50 AM

Post #8866977

Done - back in the muck. I poked around the other pot and it feels like the same thing. No tubers.

dyzzypyxxy

dyzzypyxxy
Sarasota, FL
(Zone 9b)

October 28, 2011
10:14 AM

Post #8867012

Yeah, I think it takes big leaves to make a tuber. I just scrolled up, and you started those seeds in April, so they really had a fairly short season to grow. You could give them a boost early by putting the tubs on a seed starting mat to help warm the water early. Water needs to get into the 70's before they start putting up leaves. As soon as you see leaf shoots, get them in the sun!

Give 'em lots of fert next year, maybe you could even start with a few trowels-full of manure/compost, since you're growing them in tubs with no fish. Grow some fabulous leaves, and you'll for sure have tubers by next fall. The leaves alone are worth growing the plant, they're so pretty. Water rolls around on them like mercury, the leaf surface is 'unwettable'. It's really fun to watch.
ardesia
Saint Helena Island, SC
(Zone 9a)

October 28, 2011
1:41 PM

Post #8867156

There was a really good program on Georgia Public TV a while back, it was Your Southern Garden, and they featured the lotus pots at the Bamboo Farm in Savannah. I have seen the pots and they are large, in the 40 to 50 gallon range. The horticulturist mentioned fertilizing them every week because the water gets so hot and they use up food quickly. I have not tried that yet but I have fed mine every two weeks and I did see an improvement in the number of leaves and flowers. They were fertilizing through October but I stopped back in early September when the leaves started dying down.
DebinSC
Georgetown, SC
(Zone 8a)

August 6, 2013
12:47 AM

Post #9622740

I came across this thread searching for an answer to my lotus question. I bet someone who has posted here knows the answer, though. I started a lotus from seed I collected on the shore of Lake Marion where here are big fields of the native yellow ones.

I'm certain it will be too big for my pond, but it occurred to me that perhaps the size can be controlled by sinking it within a smaller container? Would that work? The pond is only about 4 ft by 3ft and about 2 feet deep.

I had ordered a dwarf variety from someone on line and it was sent bare-root with no water or moisture material and was pretty dead, so I resorted to trying seeds - which worked!
Deb

PS/ X, how did yours do over the winter(s)? :D
Xeramtheum
Summerville, SC
(Zone 8a)

August 6, 2013
5:36 AM

Post #9622832

Hey Deb!

Mine got to the coin stage over wintered nicely and faded away in the Summer. Don't know why.
ardesia
Saint Helena Island, SC
(Zone 9a)

August 6, 2013
8:29 AM

Post #9622989

Last year my lotus, which had always been outstanding, fizzled out. I gave the roots to a friend with a real pond to see if she had any better luck with them. This year I started out with new roots, from a reputable dealer, and they too have been underwhelming. I have not seen a flower yet and the leaves are already dying off.
I wish I had some kind of explanation, this is the first time in many years that I had trouble with lotus, it is usually just the opposite. I have consuted with two different growers andneither had any idea what is going on. Seems to be the coastal SC curse and it is driving me crazy.
DebinSC
Georgetown, SC
(Zone 8a)

August 6, 2013
9:00 AM

Post #9623009

Hmmm! That is concerning. ...
Mine just has its first leaf today. :) I'm trying not to fuss with it too much and just keep my fingers crossed.

dyzzypyxxy

dyzzypyxxy
Sarasota, FL
(Zone 9b)

August 6, 2013
12:47 PM

Post #9623201

I had a dwarf variety that bloomed nicely in June and July the first year, then leafed out, and fizzled out the next as well. Turns out my pond doesn't get enough sunlight to make them bloom all summer, so that wasn't the plant's fault,

Btw, the grower I ordered mine from only ships lotus in the early spring. Texas Waterlilies, I'd highly recommend them. Everything I've had from them has done great. Well, except the lotus did not live past 2 years.

Maybe your native variety will be more disease/pest resistant, let's hope. No idea if you can keep it smaller by confining it, but they are lusty growers, make big tubers, and I'd think you would need to roust the pot out and divide the tubers out each fall so that they didn't crowd themselves too much.

Confining them might cause them to not bloom, too. But the leaves are gorgeous.

Lily_love

Lily_love
Central, AL
(Zone 7b)

August 6, 2013
12:57 PM

Post #9623210

Hi all, I've a tube tub for several years now. It isn't declining over the years. But, this year because I don't have the right fertilizer (aquatic fertilizer) for them; I've had only one flower blooming each time. This is my 3rd flower for the season.

And I concur, these type of flower do need full sun to have flower.



This message was edited Aug 6, 2013 2:01 PM

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ardesia
Saint Helena Island, SC
(Zone 9a)

August 6, 2013
2:00 PM

Post #9623300

My lotus are growing in the same conditions they always have. Some of my roots came from Texas Waterlilies and some from Perry's Water Gardens in NC. When they failed last year I changed to soil for this year but the fresh soil did not work.

These are pictures from several years ago, the third picture is of the only flowers I *almost* had this year. They just dried up before they opened.

Thumbnail by ardesia   Thumbnail by ardesia   Thumbnail by ardesia      
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DebinSC
Georgetown, SC
(Zone 8a)

August 7, 2013
12:49 PM

Post #9624130

Beautiful flowers and photos of them Lily and Ardesia! My pond only gets 1/2 day sun, so I may have to get a big tub for my little one - if it makes it. So far - so good!

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