James H. Schutte
Plant Common Name
Tropical Night-blooming Waterlily
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The pungently fragrant night-blooming Antares tropical waterlily is a very free-flowering selection beloved for cup-like, rosy red and orange flowers. These exceptionally colored blooms are held above the water surface, open around dusk and begin to close between 11 a.m. and noon the next day. Each blossom lasts for three to four days. 'Antares' was bred by Patrick Nutt of Longwood Gardens (Kennett Square, Pennsylvania) and introduced in 1962.
'Antares' has round, green floating leaves with undulating edges and pointy projections. New leaves emerge attractively bronze with green veins. They are supported by flexible brownish red stems that arise from a rhizome growing in mucky soil below.
Tropical waterlilies require full sun and sites with calm, shallow, very warm freshwater. Tender tropical cultivars, like ‘Antares’, should be in water that is warmer than 75 degrees Fahrenheit (24 degrees Celsius). When water temperatures drop below this point, the plant will slowly enter a dormancy by first stopping flowering, then reducing growth dramatically and eventually death if in cold water for an extended period. In late spring or summer, when water is warm, plant the rhizome directly in heavy, mucky soil or in a large submerged container filled with dense loam or clay-rich garden soil (not light potting mix). If growing tropical waterlilies in climates with very cold winters, ensure that the plant is removed from the pool before expected chilly autumn nights. In these cases plants must be grown in submerged watertight pots that can be pulled out and placed in a sunny, bright, indoor room to overwinter. This tropical cultivar is a great choice for a medium to large freshwater pool.
AHS Heat Zone
12 - 7
USDA Hardiness Zone
9 - 15
Full Sun, Partial Sun
5'-7' / 1.5m - 2.1m
Clay, Loam, Sand
Sharp or Has Thorns