Lily Pad Love: Paying Homage to Floating Flora

Pale pink lotus flower with yellow center

Water Lilies (or Lotus flowers) and Lily Pads may be a bit out of context for my usual seasonal photos array. However, visits to Botanic gardens in Denver and Albuquerque presented themselves with these beauties. As such, I felt compelled to pay homage to floating flora.

I find it fascinating that from a dark, shallow pond bright green lily pads with their floating flowers can emerge each year. I did a google search for some background info on them – the results being: 

Water lily is a family of about 60 species in 4 genera of freshwater flowering plants (order Nymphaeales) native to the temperate and tropical parts of the world.” 

Pink water lily with green lily pads
Pink water lily with round, green lily pads floating in pond.

Water lilies provide food for fish and wildlife as well as shade and protection from predators such as birds. They are good for the environment but can sometimes cause drainage problems because of their rapid growth.

Star-like Flowers and Round Flat Leaves

Lily pads with their round, predominately green leaves, bob gently on the surface of freshwater ponds and lakes. Their star-like flowers with bright yellow centers actually come in an array of colors. Many of us have likely seen the typical, yellow, white and shades of pink flowers. But I have also seen them in bright violet and the deep crimson color of these Black Princess water lilies in the photo below. (Not the best photo as it was taken with my phone.)

In addition to an array of flower colors, there are also colorful lily pads themselves. The variegated lily pads with their unique patterns and textures stand out as the float in the dark pond waters.

Crimson red Black Princess water lilies.
Black Princess water lilies with their dark crimson flowers.
colorful variegated lily pads in pond.
Colorful variegated lily pads with their unique patterns and textures.

Having a Spiritual Significance

Yellow water lily flowers with green lily pads
Yellow Lotus Flowers

Also known as a Lotus flower, a water lily has a Spiritual significance:

“Water lilies mean many things in different areas of the world, but they have special significance in Buddhism and Hinduism. For these religions, the water lily symbolizes resurrection, because these flowers close up at night and reopen in the morning, similar to a spiritual rebirth. Buddhists also believe that the water lily represents enlightenment because a beautiful bloom emerges from the dark mud.”

Quoted from article: 6 Water Lily Facts That Will Make You Love Them Even More

Evoking a Feeling of Stillness and Calm

Pale pink lotus flower close-up
Pale pink water lily with bright yellow center.

For me observing water lilies evokes a sense of peace and calm. There is something serene they coney in their still presence. Even in the darkness of muddy waters Nature brings forth beauty in these floating flowers.

Admittedly photographing them has almost landed me in the very pond waters where they reside. There is that temptation to get a closer shot – especially when I see bees buzzing around on the flowers!

Note to self for future reference: bring my other lens! 🙂


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