lotus nelumbo nucifera

Lotus Nelumbo Nucifera: Sacred Plant Guide

Did you know that the sacred lotus, also known as Nelumbo nucifera, is a beautiful ornamental plant and holds significant cultural and religious importance?

This aquatic plant, with its enchanting pink flowers and floating leaves, has been revered for centuries in Eastern Asia for its symbolism and aesthetic allure.

Key Takeaways:

  • The sacred lotus, Nelumbo nucifera, is an aquatic plant native to Eastern Asia.
  • Its circular peltate leaves, large pink flowers, and golden receptacles characterize it.
  • Nelumbo nucifera is vital in providing habitat and food for various animals.
  • To cultivate and propagate lotus, suitable conditions and proper care are essential.
  • When growing lotus, full sun exposure, warm water, and proper depth are crucial factors.
wild lotus

Taxonomy and Identification of Lotus Nelumbo Nucifera

The sacred lotus, scientifically known as Nelumbo nucifera, is also commonly referred to as Asian lotus or Indian lotus. Classified under the family Nelumbonaceae, Nelumbo nucifera can be easily identified by its distinct characteristics.

One key identifying feature of Nelumbo nucifera is its circular peltate leaves. These leaves have waxy and smooth margins, giving them a unique appearance. The light green petioles, or leaf stalks, further differentiate the plant’s overall visual appeal.

However, the large pink flowers of Nelumbo nucifera truly mesmerize. These flowers boast a golden receptacle and stamens, enhancing their captivating beauty.

The plant relies on rhizomes as its roots, which serve the dual purpose of anchoring it in the water and storing essential nutrients.

Nelumbo nucifera can be easily recognized through its circular peltate leaves, waxy and smooth leaf margins, light green petioles, and large pink flowers with golden receptacles and stamens.

The presence of rhizomes further aids in its identification and sets it apart from other aquatic plants.

Stay tuned for the upcoming sections to learn about the habitat, cultivation, and tips for growing the enticing Nelumbo nucifera.

Habitat and Ecological Significance of Lotus Nelumbo Nucifera

The beautiful and revered Nelumbo nucifera, commonly known as lotus, thrives in various aquatic habitats.

This sacred plant can be found in shallow ponds, lakes, slow-moving streams, rivers, reservoirs, freshwater tidal waters, and wetlands. It is well-suited to these environments and has adapted to grow in water with pH levels ranging from 5.7 to 6.8.

Lotus plays a vital role in the ecosystem by providing habitat and food sources for various animals. Creatures such as deer, beavers, muskrats, and porcupines depend on Nelumbo for sustenance.

The plant’s leaves offer shelter and shade for fish and invertebrates, including mosquitoes. The lotus supports the larvae of the moth Psara obscuralis.

The introduction of lotus in certain areas can have ecological implications. It can potentially cause declines in macrophytes and invertebrates’ richness and diversity.

Despite this, its significance in providing essential ecological functions cannot be understated.

lotus nelumbo nucifera

As an essential part of the aquatic ecosystem, Nelumbo nucifera plays a crucial role in maintaining the balance and health of its habitat. Its beauty, symbolism, and ecological significance make it a truly remarkable plant.

Cultivation and Propagation of Lotus Nelumbo Nucifera

Growing Nelumbo nucifera, also known as lotus nelumbo nucifera, is a rewarding endeavor easily achieved with the right knowledge and conditions.

To cultivate this magnificent aquatic plant, you must start with the rhizomes, the underground stem structures responsible for growth and propagation.

For successful cultivation, it is crucial to provide the lotus with a suitable environment.

Choose a location with a rich loam soil and ensure access to water up to 2.5 meters deep. In cooler climates, growing the lotus in shallower water is advisable to promote optimal growth.


The ideal water temperature for lotus nelumbo nucifera ranges between 23-27°C, and a growing season of five months is typically required for the plant to thrive.

Whether you choose to grow it in containers or directly in the bottom of a pond, providing the lotus with the appropriate water depth and temperature is essential.

It is considered a heavy feeder to support the lotus’ nutritional needs. Adding composted cow manure and regular waterlily/lotus fertilizer will help promote healthy growth and vibrant blooms.

Like any other plant, providing adequate care, including regular watering and maintenance is crucial.


Regarding propagation, dividing the rhizomes in spring is the most common method.

Carefully separate the rhizomes and ensure that each piece has viable buds. Plant these divisions in suitable conditions, following the same guidelines for cultivation mentioned above.

With proper care and attention, your lotus nelumbo nucifera will continue to flourish and offer its captivating beauty for years to come.

cultivation of lotus nelumbo nucifera

Tips for Growing Lotus Nelumbo Nucifera

When growing Nelumbo nucifera, it is important to provide the plant with full sun exposure of at least 6-7 hours per day. This ensures that the lotus receives sunlight for optimal growth and flower production.

The water temperature should be kept consistently warm, ideally between 23-27°C. This is crucial for the lotus to thrive and bloom beautifully. Additionally, the lotus should be planted in water at least 4-5 inches deep, allowing the roots to anchor firmly and take in the required nutrients.

Protection from raccoons may be necessary, as they are known to pull out the plants. Installing a barrier or using netting can help safeguard your lotus from these curious creatures. It’s also important to choose a pond that doesn’t freeze solid during winter, as lotuses are best suited for milder climates.

Hand-pollination may be required for seed production. This involves transferring pollen from one flower to another using a small brush or cotton swab. Manually pollinating the lotus can increase the chances of successful seed development and future growth.

Finally, when transplanting lotus, avoid damaging the growing tip.

This delicate plant part is vital for its continued growth and vitality. If the growing tip is injured or severed, it can lead to the death of the lotus. Take your time and handle the plant with care to ensure a successful transplant.

With these tips, you can cultivate a thriving and flourishing Nelumbo nucifera in your garden or pond. By providing the right conditions and attentive care, you can enjoy the beauty and symbolism of this revered and sacred plant.

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