Plant of the Month — February 2018
Ottelia ovalifolia (R.Br.) Rich. — Swamp Lily
Ottelia ovalifolia (Swamp Lily) is a perennial or annual, tufted, aquatic plant with floating leaves and flowers. The solitary flowers arise from the base of the plant and feature three bright, white petals with a contrasting maroon or yellow base.
The Swamp Lily is found throughout mainland Australia, where it grows in still and slowly flowing fresh water to 1 m deep. It can be seen in local wetlands around Perth throughout the summer period, particularly as water systems begin to dry.
The genus Ottelia belongs to the family Hydrocharitaceae and contains approximately twenty species that are found mainly in the tropics and subtropics, with just two native species O. ovalifolia and O. alismoides growing in Australia.
Photo: R. Davis
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