Yellow American lotus flower
American lotus (Nelumbo lutea)

If you’re looking to add some drama to your water garden or pond, the American lotus is the plant for the job. Its huge, yellow flowers have a lovely fragrance, and the unusual seed pods are often dried and used in floral arrangements.

The lotus is a gorgeous aquatic plant with huge luminescent yellow or pink flowers. The leaves are circular and pad-like, and are attached to a long, submerged stalk. The seed are known to live for thousands of years.

Most types of lotus require plenty of space and a full sun location to thrive. The non-native lotus species is very aggressive, so you may want to plant yours in a container. The American lotus is not as aggressive but can also be planted in a container for ease of care.

Fill a shallow, weighted container with garden soil or potting mix and plant your rhizome. Lower the container into 6 inches of water until growth begins.

Dwarf cultivars of lotus are available for the smaller water garden.

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