Red Lotus (nymphaea rubra) is a member of the waterlily family and is known commonly as Indian Red Waterlily. It is a close relative of Sacred Blue Waterlily (nymphaea caerulea), which is known commonly as Blue Lotus. Although both are referred to as “lotus” this can be misleading because the true lotus is in the genus nelumbo. Aside from being visually similar, all these flowers have similar alkaloids and herbal uses. All are used in essential oil production, aromatherapy and soap making, although red lotus naturally has a gentler scent. It is also a bit harder to find. We offer genuine Thai-grown red lotus petals as well as nymphaea caerulea (blue lotus) flowers, pink lotus petals (nelumbo nucifera) and white lotus petals (nelumbo nucifera). Also check out our store for various Nymphaea and nelumbo seeds.
Growing Information: Nymphaea caerulea requires full sun, fertile soil and will benefit from regular fertilization. It is best grown in about a foot of water. Because of its heavy nutrient demands it tends to fight off algae that compete for nutrients. Seeds are best off being started in pots submerged two centimeters below the surface of water in some sort of basin big enough to hold all your pots. The pots should be filled with a rich, clayey loam and the seeds pressed into the surface before submersion. For this process, it is recommended that you use bottled, distilled or clean rain water rather than tap water to fill your basin. Reports of using seed propagators have also produced positive results with these seeds for at least one grower that we know of. Plants may be grown directly in the ground, which should be bedded with fertile soil, or in pots that are sunk below the surface of the water. Once established, it can easily be propagated by dividing the rhizomes. Being from warm locations naturally, this species requires steady warmth of about 75 degrees throughout the germination process.