Wednesday, January 4, 2012
Blue, or Purple Hardy Waterlilies?
The blue "hardy" waterlily has long been the most sought after prize of the water gardening world. The only waterlilies on the market with blue or purple flowers are "tropical" and will not overwinter in at least 95% of the mainland U.S.
Recently some hybridizers have made great strides in creating these plants. Mike Giles, a waterlily grower in southern West Virginia has created dozens of different crosses of hardy plants with flowers of various shades of blue, purple, and lavender colors. Many of these can be viewed at Mike's Facebook page.
It may be a while before these plants are widely available, but it appears to be inevitable that pond owners will be enjoying them soon.
I had a chance to meet and visit with Mike this past summer. He has several large ponds filled with waterlilies on a beautiful farm in the West Virginia hills. He lives very simply and devotes much of his time to his waterlilies and his three horses. He is the good looking guy on the left in the photo. I salute Mike for his vision and obvious Pond Passion.