What Is the Life Cycle of a Water Lily?

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The water lily, or nymphaea, is a perennial plant that blooms from June to September, when it opens in the morning sunlight and closes in the late afternoon or evening. It is a notably fragrant flower that goes dormant during the winter, but it dies if the pond or lake it grows in freezes.

Water lilies thrive in freshwater environments such as ponds and lakes. Each flower is approximately 2 to 6 inches in diameter, and its leaves are about 4 to 12 inches wide. Water lilies grow their seeds underwater in a berry-like fruit. When the fruit is ripe, it releases up to 2,000 seeds, which the water carries to various places in the lake or pond. The seeds absorb water, sink to the floor of the pond and begin to grow.

The water lily tends to grow in clusters, which can sometimes even cover the surface of a pond with leaves and petals. This helps to block sunlight and keep the temperature of a pond low in the summertime. It also helps to prevent too much algae from growing and upsetting the pond’s ecosystem. Furthermore, water lilies provide shelter for fish who need a respite from the sunlight or who are hiding from predators.