Florida Wildflowers – White Pond Lily


White Pond Lilly

White Pond Lilly

The White Pond Lily is a perennial aquatic plant that grows in thick colonies in ponds, lakes, marshes and small bodies of water. This aquatic plant is prized for its beauty because of its white petals, yellow center and fragrant smell. I saw and photographed these lilies in a drainage ditch next to a marsh in the morning after a heavy rain the night before. It generally opens its flowers in the morning and closes by mid day. The White Pond Lily can be found from Quebec in the north all the way to Florida and as far west as Washington. It reproduces by dropping seeds and also sending it’s rhizomes or roots spreading underground. The White Lily also has the reputation for its medicinal qualities. The bulb of the flower and stem contain chemicals called tannins which some say helps to cure bronchial problems, sore throats, dermatological problems and diarrhea. The University of Florida Dept. of Food and Agricultural Services has stated that only 10% of plants in the U.S. have been studied for their health benefits. This is a reason why biodiversity is important and why we should keep our forests, jungles and other ecosystems healthy. The Univ. of Florida has rated this plant as one of the 50 plants that is important to the cultural heritage and list of native plant species in Florida. I found a few good websites to see and learn more about White Pond Lily’s at the Texas A & M Agrilife Extension and Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center. click on image for larger picture

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