Changeable Hardy Water Lily, Waterlily 'Sioux'

Nymphaea rustica

Family: Nymphaeaceae (nim-fee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Nymphaea (NIM-fee-uh) (Info)
Species: rustica (RUS-tih-kuh) (Info)
Cultivar: Sioux
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under 6 in. (15 cm)


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)

USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Bloom Color:


Gold (yellow-orange)

Bloom Time:

Mid Summer

Late Summer/Early Fall





Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us

Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Very high moisture needs; suitable for bogs and water gardens

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Cordele, Georgia

Mason, Michigan

Brooklyn, New York

Ithaca, New York

Dudley, North Carolina

Hulbert, Oklahoma

Portland, Oregon

Meshoppen, Pennsylvania

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Gardeners' Notes:


On Jul 16, 2009, PinetopPlanter from Auburn Four Corners, PA (Zone 5a) wrote:

I agree with the other reviewer on this plant, although I don't find it to be a shy bloomer (but I don't have the other varieties the other reviewer compares its blooming habits to).

It is a surprisingly attractive and delicately-colored lily. Many in this color class seem to be a little non-descript. Not so with Sioux. Mine is planted in the ground of the pond, not in a pot. It has proved non-invasive, spreading at a slow rate, and providing cheerful orange-sherbet colored flowers. It is not the most spectacular, but it is a sweet plant, and, as the other reviewer said, I appreciate having it!


On Oct 20, 2004, lmelling from Ithaca, NY (Zone 5b) wrote:

Very nice, small waterlily. Blooms are peachy fading to a pale pink by the 3rd day. I purchased one several years ago and over winter it in the pond with the rest of my waterlilies. This one is potted in a 10"x7" pot and has yet to show the need for repotting unlike some of my more aggressive lilies that have to be repotted each year or they naturalize.

During the season here in Zone 5, blooms are not as prolific as those on other hardy waterlilies such as Wildfire, Rose Arey and some of the whites, but it's still a nice lily and I appreciate having it. I would say it would be at home in a small to medium size pond. Pads tend to cover approximately 2'-3' of water surface.