Red Water Lily Facts

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Red Water Lily Quick Facts
Name: Red Water Lily
Scientific Name: Nymphaea rubra
Colors Brown green
Nymphaea rubra belonging to family Mymphaceae is inherent to India, Thailand and Nile delta. In Europe, it is cultivated as an aquarist plant. Leaves are called heterophyllie which refers under water surface look different than those on water surface. They are acute, heart shaped and petiole that grows nearly in the middle of the lamina. Leaves are first reddish than dark green and dentate at the leaf edge. Flowers are red and 15 cm in diameter. Flowers open at night and closes in the morning. Fruits are brown green and are about 4 to 6 cm in diameter. Seeds are black, elliptic and about 1.8 mm long. Seeds are encircled by an arilus which includes air.

Plant description

Nymphaea rubra is a perennial herbaceous aquatic plant having pinkish and corm shaped rhizomes rooted in a sediment and forms slender stolons. Leaves are simple, 20 to 50 cm in diameter and subpeltate. Leaves (submerged) are sagittate or cordate with reddish tint. Flowers are showy, bisexual, fragrant, hypogynous, polymerous measuring 15 cm across and solitary on dark red peduncle above water. Calyx is aposepalous having four red oblong to lanceolate and caduceus sepals. Corolla is elliptic to oblanceolate, 20-25 mm and red to purple petals length is thricer longer than the breadth. Androecium is polyandrous and filaments are dark-red purple and petaloid. Ovary is globose encased in a fleshy torus, syncarpous, multi-carpellate and multi-loculed. Fruit is a globose berry which encloses ellipsoid seeds.

Traditional uses

  • Flower is astringent and cardiac tonic, helpful for heart palpitations.
  • Rhizomes are used as a cure for dyspepsia and dysentery.
  • People of Assam use the roots for vomiting.
  • Apply the dried roots powder in area with piles for 66 to 7 days.
  • The mixture of crushed rhizome powder with honey is used for piles, bleeding nose and dysentery in Manipur.
  • Apply the leaves paste to body for fever and skin inflammation.
  • Use the flowers as a treatment for cholera, diarrhea, hepatopathy, fever and hyperdipisa.
  • Root decoction is used for kidney pain, bronchial catarrh or as a gargle for sore throats.
  • Use it in douche as a treatment for vaginal soreness and discharges.
  • A poultice prepared with the mixture of slippery elm, flax and red water lily is used for treating abscesses and boils.

Culinary uses

Use roasted seeds as a substitute for coffee.






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