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Name derivation:

Presumably from Sanskrit nilotpala, blue lotus flower.


Nuphar Sm.;  8 species descriptions (and 3 hybrids) are currently accepted taxonomically.

Order Nymphaeales;  Family Nymphaeaceae


Leaves chordate.  Submerged leaves reddish on elongating petioles, but turn waxy green once they reach the water surface.  Entire margins, vascular tissue (‘veins’) radiating toward the margins with almost no branching.

Flowers yellow with 5-6 cupped sepals, small scale-like petals and many stamens.  Fruit fleshy and containing many seeds (Fassett 1940, 1957).

Similar genera:



Distributed widely in N. hemisphere from temperate to subarctic zones.

Freshwater habitats with organic sediments – marshes, edges of lakes, sluggish rivers.



Fassett, N.C.  1940, 1957,.  A manual of aquatic plants.  University of Wisconsin Press (405 pp).