Ponds and Water Gardening forum: Mail order tropical lilies question

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Name: Audrey
Central Texas (Zone 8a)
Organic Gardener Keeper of Poultry Keeps Horses Butterflies Photo Contest Winner: 2015
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Esperanza
Mar 4, 2015 8:11 PM CST
I just received my tropical Evelyn Randig in the mail the other day and it only is about two and half inches. I put it in a tiny pot and sunk it in a see through large glass mug for now and it already broken dormancy and has tiny little leaves coming up. Hurray! In the past I have always bought hardy mature specimens at a water garden store so I do not have any experience in how fast they grow from this size. I will probably want to bring them in next winter.

I don't want to plant it in a size larger than it needs this year depending on the growth just to be lugging in an oversized wet pot next winter. I have it in something so small now because I will be waiting a few more weeks before frosts are over.

All thoughts and ideas welcome.
Name: Audrey
Central Texas (Zone 8a)
Organic Gardener Keeper of Poultry Keeps Horses Butterflies Photo Contest Winner: 2015
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Esperanza
Mar 5, 2015 8:45 PM CST
Helloooooo, anybody home? Shake the snow off folks. Spring is almost here. Time to get this party started!
Name: Carolyn Madden
Pennsylvania
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Carolyn22
Mar 8, 2015 11:13 AM CST
Hi Audrey.

I only had one experience with a tropical WL and I bought it already sprouted from my pond store.

At this point in time, I am wondering if your warmer weather is close enough so that it won't be long before a tropical WL can be put into your pond. I know the hardy WL's put out their pads as soon as my water warms.

I wish I had more information for you.

Carolyn
Name: Audrey
Central Texas (Zone 8a)
Organic Gardener Keeper of Poultry Keeps Horses Butterflies Photo Contest Winner: 2015
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Esperanza
Mar 8, 2015 11:50 AM CST
Thank you Carolyn. Yes, I did consider just putting it out already, but it is so tiny right now I feel protective over it. It is my first time with the tropical version. Maybe after more experience with it I will feel more comfortable and not feel like I need to baby it. They are not cheap and I sure don't want to loose it.
Name: Carolyn Madden
Pennsylvania
Charter ATP Member The WITWIT Badge I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Dog Lover Plant and/or Seed Trader Daylilies
Bulbs Purslane Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Hummingbirder Clematis Cat Lover
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Carolyn22
Mar 8, 2015 2:24 PM CST
Audrey -

I would be interested in what happens. I'm all ears!
Name: Pat Barlow
Apple Valley, California (Zone 8b)
Irises Ponds Dragonflies Butterflies Daylilies Hummingbirder
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dragonfetti
Mar 9, 2015 11:40 AM CST
Hi Audrey, Just wanted to add what my sister has done this spring. She is starting up her ponds this year after a 10 year hiatus and uses small swimming pools. She has bought 10? or more lilies already and has had to baby some a bit due to the cold temps we are still having here.The first ones she received had leaves and one had a bloom already. She started by putting them in a plastic tub with an aquarium fish heater in the water. That worked fine until we got the pond going. Then she planted them and put them in the pond but it was too cold and they died back. So she put them back into a small tub with a heater in the water. The batch she bought from Texas waterlilies was very small with just a few very tiny leaves. All went into individual 4 x 4 pots of water and were placed on a heating pad in the green house. Many took right off and went out to the now insulated and covered pond, three needed more TLC but now have many leaves that are about two inches across. The tropical lilies take a lot warmer water (80 -90 degrees for growing) than the hardy lilies so many people grow them as annuals. Here in southern California they usually will winter over but we now live in the high desert and the climate is colder and at times hotter than when she grew them down in the San Bernardino Valley. Check my plant database for the lilies and lotus that we have started. You can see my growing reports. She is also starting lilies and lotus from seeds. Hope this helps.
“Cares melt when you kneel in your garden.”
Name: Audrey
Central Texas (Zone 8a)
Organic Gardener Keeper of Poultry Keeps Horses Butterflies Photo Contest Winner: 2015
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Esperanza
Mar 9, 2015 5:19 PM CST
Hello Pat, thank you for sharing your experience. I also got mine from Texas Water lilies. So far so good. It is making tiny new leaves and seems happy in its glass for now. The lotus I received from them at the same time is already putting out the first leaf to.( I have it potted inside) The lotus I am much more comfortable with. That I know. Looking forward to growing and learning about something new this year thanks again for sharing.
Name: Pat Barlow
Apple Valley, California (Zone 8b)
Irises Ponds Dragonflies Butterflies Daylilies Hummingbirder
Birds Dog Lover Annuals Dahlias Garden Art Seed Starter
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dragonfetti
Mar 10, 2015 2:48 PM CST
Since you have a lot more lotus experience (we have not grown these before) maybe we can swap knowledge and ideas. I bought Spring Bird and my sister bought Momo Batan and Birthday Peach all from Texas Waterliles. Spring Bird came with a broken tuber but the leaves have sprouted and one is completely open. Sister has put one of hers in the outside pond and the other is planted and on the bottom shelf of the inside greenhouse. We bought two of the little greenhouses from Big Lots this year and they have worked out pretty good. One we have inside to start seeds and the other is on the patio so the seedlings in trays can get acclimated. Just really started gardening here at this location, my husband and I moved here in 2011. I was not going to do any gardening at all because of some back issues, and the desert and climate challenges. However my sister needed a place to live so she moved in with us a year ago and she too has always gardened and now she does 80% or more of the work. The gardens have mushroomed into a large project but enjoying the plants again. If you love gardening do you ever stop? I was going to put my lotus in a barrel that is plastic or whatever they make them out of, it's black and I placed it in full sun. I have yet to put the lotus or other plants in it. Any suggestions?
“Cares melt when you kneel in your garden.”
Name: Audrey
Central Texas (Zone 8a)
Organic Gardener Keeper of Poultry Keeps Horses Butterflies Photo Contest Winner: 2015
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Esperanza
Mar 10, 2015 4:25 PM CST
Alright! We can share pics of our Momo Batan. I ordered that as well. It has three leaves coming up already. I still have mine inside planted in a black plastic pot. I will have my pot in the heat of the day in shade. That black plastic will really heat up in the sun. Good for now with the cooler nights, but in the summer would be too hot here. My experience with them has only been in large public gardens. When they are fresh it is magical, but when they start going dormant, they are such a mess. They become invasive and weedy in some ponds. This will be my first experience with it in my home garden.
That's why I will be doing it in a pot also, so that I can have it on show when it looks good, and pull it to another less seen area when it looks ratty.

Momo Batan
Thumb of 2015-03-10/Esperanza/8d0de0

Evelyn Randig


Thumb of 2015-03-10/Esperanza/8e8186

That's great that you have a sister that loves to garden and can help with all the work. I could use one of those. And I agree. When you love gardening, you will always find a way Thumbs up

Name: Paul Anguiano
Richland, WA (Zone 7a)
GW & DG: tropicalaria
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psa
Mar 11, 2015 2:47 PM CST

Moderator

The tropical water lilies really require warmer water to tell them that it's time to grow--never below 50F and ideally above 70F, in my experience. Once they get going they are much faster and more vigorous than their hardy siblings. Evelyn Randig has very pretty leaves and grows quite large. It is not very hardy, though. It will start to bulb when the water gets cooler, but it can be tricky to break out of dormancy again if not treated right.

Note that unlike hardy water lilies which generally grow and divide along the surface of the solid media substrate, tropicals usually grow straight up into the water, sending roots downward in all directions. An overly small pot will definitely dwarf the plant, but it will probably stress it as well.
Name: Audrey
Central Texas (Zone 8a)
Organic Gardener Keeper of Poultry Keeps Horses Butterflies Photo Contest Winner: 2015
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Esperanza
Mar 11, 2015 7:00 PM CST
psa said:The tropical water lilies really require warmer water to tell them that it's time to grow--never below 50F and ideally above 70F, in my experience. Once they get going they are much faster and more vigorous than their hardy siblings. Evelyn Randig has very pretty leaves and grows quite large. It is not very hardy, though. It will start to bulb when the water gets cooler, but it can be tricky to break out of dormancy again if not treated right.

Note that unlike hardy water lilies which generally grow and divide along the surface of the solid media substrate, tropicals usually grow straight up into the water, sending roots downward in all directions. An overly small pot will definitely dwarf the plant, but it will probably stress it as well.


Thank you for your thoughts Paul! When you say not as hardy, does this mean only winter issues? Or special treatment during the warm months? I felt confident that I would be able to over winter it in my pond next year. Texas Water lilies are farther north than I am and keep theirs outside. I guess I am jumping ahead of myself though. I will see how well this summer goes. I am really looking forward to seeing the vigorous growth compared to the hardy.
Name: Paul Anguiano
Richland, WA (Zone 7a)
GW & DG: tropicalaria
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages Garden Photography
Enjoys or suffers hot summers Tomato Heads Organic Gardener Greenhouse Native Plants and Wildflowers Herbs
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psa
Mar 12, 2015 5:36 AM CST

Moderator

It's mostly a matter of water temperature. When the water's warm and the sun is shining, they grow like weeds and bloom endlessly. When the water cools down, they become fragile.

I'm a big fan of Texas Waterlilies.
Name: Audrey
Central Texas (Zone 8a)
Organic Gardener Keeper of Poultry Keeps Horses Butterflies Photo Contest Winner: 2015
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Esperanza
Mar 12, 2015 11:13 AM CST
Thumbs up Looking forward to the show! That is one of the reasons I decided this year to try my hand at the tropical ones. My hardies just do not bloom as much as I would like. I decided I am going all out this year after slacking with my garden last year.
Name: Pat Barlow
Apple Valley, California (Zone 8b)
Irises Ponds Dragonflies Butterflies Daylilies Hummingbirder
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dragonfetti
Mar 12, 2015 1:15 PM CST
This is the first year for us to purchase from Texas Waterlilies but again it has been 10 years since my sister had ponds. At that time you could buy them at Home Depot and maybe Wal-Mart, no Lowe's in the area. We were also just a short distance from Van Ness Water Gardens and had purchased some there and a few from other local vendors who are no longer in business. We were just at Van Ness last month and they have very few lilies in the ponds. I guess they order them now. Most people in this area have taken out their ponds due to the water shortage I guess. We also found out that Martin Randig (1897-1967) lived in San Bernardino just a few minutes away from where we lived! It would be interesting to know exactly where. Well the lilies and lotus will be a blessing when the hot weather gets here!
“Cares melt when you kneel in your garden.”
Name: Audrey
Central Texas (Zone 8a)
Organic Gardener Keeper of Poultry Keeps Horses Butterflies Photo Contest Winner: 2015
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Esperanza
Mar 12, 2015 7:46 PM CST
I have come across a few articles over the years that states that ponds require less water to maintain than lawns do. In my experience even drought tolerant plants require more water to get established than filling the pond.

Sure would love to go shopping in California. I always hear from gardeners in Cali about having really fun stuff even in big box stores.
Name: Carol
Santa Ana,Ca. (Zone 10b)
Sunset zone 22
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Orchids Region: California Plant Identifier
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ctcarol
Mar 12, 2015 8:19 PM CST
But the quality is not usually good in the big box stores. I saw lots of pond plants at Home Depot today...all in plastic covered styroform cups. I wouldn't buy them!
Name: Audrey
Central Texas (Zone 8a)
Organic Gardener Keeper of Poultry Keeps Horses Butterflies Photo Contest Winner: 2015
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Esperanza
Mar 12, 2015 8:28 PM CST
Carol, I did wonder how they merchandised pond plants. Plastic cups? Glare I never see them here except for family owned or specialty nurseries. I try to avoid the BBS anyways. I guess it is good they only have the same old stuff here or I would be even more tempted to spend money in them.
Name: Carol
Santa Ana,Ca. (Zone 10b)
Sunset zone 22
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Orchids Region: California Plant Identifier
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ctcarol
Mar 12, 2015 9:55 PM CST
Don't!

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