Lily/Lotus Questions

vissara(8 OR)September 17, 2011

Ok, so this year I decided to get my feet wet with ponding with a 100gal horse trough. I put in a Momo Baton lotus and Sioux hardy water lily

then we had an exceptionally long cold wet sping. we haven't had warm reliable temps over a week all summer. The lotus attempted to break dormancy three times, then it got cold again and the leaves turned brown and died without ever breaking the water's surface. As far as I can tell the waterlily never broke dormancy at all.

so my question is do I assume these plants are dead and make spring orders accordingly? Or should I wait and see if they come back?

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Just how deep is your trough? 2 ft?
If so then how are your lilies planted?
In pots? How close is the top of the lilies to the surface
of the water?
Is the pool in direct sun or in shade?

    Bookmark   September 17, 2011 at 8:13PM
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vissara(8 OR)

sorry, new at figuring out relevent info for this :)

The trough is 2 feet deep, the lily and lotus are plant in pots at opposite ends of it. The lotus is approximately 4- 5 inches under the water's surface, the lily about a foot down.

They are planted in clay soil (easily available in my yard) mixed with some steer manure.

The trough is in direct sun all day.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2011 at 9:21PM
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buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

If the waterlily never put up a single pad then you can assume it was dead when you got it.

While we did have an extremely cold wet spring all of my waterlilies grew and bloomed, though they bloomed later than normal.

The waterlily should be on the bottom of a trough of that depth.

We normally do not have the climate here to grow lotus unless kept in a greenhouse over winter. It isn't the cold but the lack of warmth and sunshine. I've lost everyone I've tried even with a heated pond in a heated greenhouse.

Your soil mix is just fine. You didn't bury the waterlily rhizome did you? The growing point must not be buried. Depending on where you bought it, it sounds like it was DOA...

    Bookmark   September 18, 2011 at 12:11PM
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vissara(8 OR)

I didn't bury it, but it was a Fred Meyer garden purchase ) I generally start with cheap plants while I figure out what I am doing. Next spring I will order one from Hughes

    Bookmark   September 18, 2011 at 8:18PM
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buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

I love Hughes, well worth the trip to visit by the way, but if you want to save money, you can often get hardies for a lot less from other water gardeners. They require frequent division and many trade them. There is a trade forum here on Garden Web and others by googling for them. Hughes prices for waterlilies are rather high....

There are many smaller waterlilies that would be better for your trough too

    Bookmark   September 19, 2011 at 12:24PM
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vissara(8 OR)

I did actually drive out there when I was doing my research, but their prices seemed rather high for what I was reasonably certain was going to be a season of plant-murder (I almost never do well with new plants the first time out..)

    Bookmark   September 20, 2011 at 10:55PM
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buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

Waterlilies from packages at big box stores often don't succeed, that isn't really your fault. It was likely dead for weeks before you bought it. They are not bulbs. They are not supposed to be dry and on a shelf.

    Bookmark   September 22, 2011 at 12:21PM
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