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Sacred Lotus in the Nelumbo Pond

Home > Adelaide > Free | Gardening | Gardens | Outdoor | Views
by Jenny Esots (subscribe)
A freelance writer and traveller who likes to explore the spiritual, literary and hidden gems of Adelaide and beyond.
Published January 18th 2015
Seeking the Sacred Lotus
They're back! The sacred lotus is now blooming stunningly at the Adelaide Botanical Gardens. Known by the botanical name of Nelumbo nucifera, also known as Indian lotus, sacred lotus, bean of India, or simply lotus. The Lotus can be seen in the Nelumbo pond, just near the Santos Museum of Economic Botany. It is always worth a wander in the Adelaide Botanic Gardens, but now even more so.

Sacred Lotus
Sacred Lotus

This aquatic plant is now blooming on mass and attracting plenty of visitors. This plant is an aquatic perennial. Under favorable circumstances its seeds may remain viable for many years, with the oldest recorded lotus germination being incredibly from that of seeds 1,300 years old. These seeds were recovered from a dry lakebed in northeastern China.

Sacred Lotus in full bloom at the Adelaide Botanic Gardens
Sacred Lotus in full bloom at the Adelaide Botanic Gardens

The roots of lotus are planted in the soil of a pond or river bottom, while the leaves float on top of the water surface or are held well above it. The flowers rise on thick stems rising several centimeters above the leaves. Creating a wondrous sight.

Sacred Lotus in full bloom at the Adelaide Botanic Gardens
Sacred Lotus in full bloom at the Adelaide Botanic Gardens

Another feature of the Lotus is its ability to regulate heat. Researchers have reported that the lotus has the ability to regulate the temperature of its flowers to within a narrow range just as humans and other warm-blooded animals do. In an Adelaide connection, Dr. Roger S. Seymour and Dr. Paul Schultze-Motel, physiologists at the University of Adelaide in Australia, found that lotus flowers blooming in the Adelaide Botanic Gardens maintained a temperature of 3035 C (8695 F), even when the air temperature dropped to 10 C (50 F). They suspect the flowers may be doing this to attract coldblooded insect pollinators. The study was published in the journal Nature.

Water fowl by the Nelumbo pond
Water fowl by the Nelumbo pond

The Lotus flower is impossibly beautiful. Take the time to appreciate this plant in all its wonder and glory while it puts on a show. If you are needing a change of pace and an historical look at the gardens of yesteryear, step into the Santos Museum of Economic Botany. The exhibition Postcards from the Edge of the City is highlighting postcards and messages of times gone by. Delightfully vintage, but also with a wealth of stories on how we used to live in Adelaide. The beautiful gardens being a focal point, then and now.

Nelumbo nucifera
Nelumbo nucifera

Sacred Lotus
Sacred Lotus in full bloom at the Adelaide Botanic Gardens
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Why? Sacred Lotus in full bloom at the Adelaide Botanic Gardens
Where: Adelaide Botanic Gardens
Cost: Free entry
Your Comment
It's such a beautiful pond - so worth visiting! lovely pics too Jenny
by Paula McManus (score: 3|3612) 1958 days ago
Looking resplendent in glory
by Steve Hudson (score: 3|1249) 1960 days ago
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