What To Do In The Garden This Month; Bring a touch of the tropics to your garden with waterlilies. Here’s your “how-to” growing guide
WITH FLOATING leaves, exotic blooms and a beautiful fragrance, the waterlily (Nymphaea) is a popular aquatic plant that makes a sensational statement in the garden. Available in a wide variety of colours and different sizes, there’s a lily to suit all spaces. So whether you have a backyard pond or a miniature water feature on the balcony, read on
Hardly or tropical
Miniature waterlilies are available in both hardy and tropical varieties. With smaller fl owers and leaves they’re perfect for shallow tubs and make great water features on the balcony or courtyard.
How to grow
Sun The one thing all waterlilies need is lots of sunlight to grow (at least six hours a day) – the more sun, the more blooms. No waterlily will flower in the shade. Pots Waterlilies should be grown in strong, squat plastic containers, about 20 to 25cm diameter; smaller for minatures. Provided your pot or pond is at least 40cm deep (or up to 60cm), waterlilies will grow and flower happily. However, they don’t like fl owing or splashing water so don’t position them too close to a fountain spout.
Decor with your Home
Mix & fertilise Use a good-quality, heavy topsoil or garden soil (not potting mix), and add a fertiliser that’s specially formulated for fl owering aquatic plants. Cover with a layer of pea gravel or sand to help keep the dirt in the pot when submerged.
Care Lilies should be repotted every two to three years and can be split into two or three containers at this time. All varieties die down over winter, so don’t throw them out thinking they’re dead when they’re just dormant.
SPLASH OF COLOUR
Waterlilies are available in a huge range of colours: the hardy group generally has softer shades of yellows, pinks, creams and white, such as the vigorous grower
“Colorado” with its lovely coral pink flowers. The tropicals are bolder and more vibrant with some stunning deep purple and blue shades, like the “King Of Blues