Water Lily Nymphaea 'Aurora' (H)

👤 Non-toxic to humans
🐾 Non-toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Not edible
‍🌱 Hard-care
waterlily 'Aurora'


Water lily 'Aurora' is an aquatic flowering plant known for its captivating display on the water's surface. The heart of the plant's appeal lies in its remarkable blooms which undergo a dramatic color transformation over a few days. Initially, the flowers emerge a light yellow or peach hue, but as they mature, they shift through a spectrum of colors including shades of deepening pink and rich apricot before fading. These blooms sit atop the water, held high by their flexible stems that rise from the plant's underwater root system. The flowers themselves are multi-petaled, offering layers of soft, rounded petals that create a full, cupped appearance. Surrounding the central bloom are the plant's leaves, which float gracefully on the water surface. These leaves are almost circular in shape, with a notched cut leading into the leaf base. The coloration of the leaves is a lush green, often with a spectrum of lighter and darker tones playing across their surface. As a floating plant, its roots are anchored in the soil of the pond or body of water, which can vary from fresh to mildly brackish environments. The water lily 'Aurora' provides a harmonious blend of elegant foliage and changing blossoms that contribute to the aesthetic appeal of ponds and water gardens.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      Aurora Water Lily, Sunrise Water Lily, Variable Water Lily, Changeable Water Lily

    • Common names

      Nymphaea 'Aurora'

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      The water lily is generally considered non-toxic to humans. There are no significant toxic effects reported for ingestion of the plant parts of water lilies. However, it is always advisable to avoid consuming any plant material that is not known to be safe or is not prepared properly, as individual allergic reactions or gastrointestinal discomfort could occur.

    • To pets

      Water lilies are not known to be toxic to pets. Pets that ingest parts of water lilies are unlikely to suffer from serious toxic effects. Nonetheless, as with humans, ingestion of plant material that is not part of the animal’s regular diet could potentially lead to gastrointestinal upset such as vomiting or diarrhea. It is usually best to prevent pets from consuming ornamental plants to avoid any possible issues.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      4 inches (10 cm)

    • Spread

      3 feet (91 cm)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Water Habitat Enrichment: Nymphaea 'Aurora' or Water Lily provides a natural habitat for aquatic wildlife, offering shelter and breeding ground for fish and amphibians.
    • Aesthetic Value: Water Lilies add beauty and visual interest to water gardens and ponds, with Aurora known for its changing flower colors over the blooming period.
    • Pond Health: It helps maintain water quality by reducing algae growth through shading the water and competing for nutrients.
    • Oxygenation: Water Lilies contribute to the oxygenation of water, which is beneficial for fish and other aquatic creatures.
    • Surface Coverage: Their broad leaves provide shade that can help regulate water temperature and reduce the harmful effects of direct sunlight on the pond ecosystem.
    • Habitat for Insects: They provide landing platforms for pollinators and other beneficial insects.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    • Anxiolytic effects: Water lily can have calming properties that may help in reducing anxiety.
    • Sedative effects: The plant has been used for its sedative properties to promote relaxation and improve sleep quality.
    • Antioxidant activity: Water lily contains compounds that may exhibit antioxidant effects, potentially protecting cells from oxidative stress.
    • Anti-inflammatory properties: Some studies suggest that water lily can help to reduce inflammation in the body.
    • Analgesic effects: Traditional use suggests water lily might have pain-relieving properties.
    Please note that while Nymphaea 'Aurora' has been associated with these potential medical properties, more research is needed to support these claims fully, and it is not recommended to use this plant as a replacement for conventional medical treatments. Always consult a healthcare professional before using any plant for medicinal purposes.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Water lilies, such as Nymphaea 'Aurora', have been used in art and design, with their elegant flowers inspiring artists and being featured in paintings, prints, and home decor.
    • The floating leaves of water lilies provide shade and can reduce algae growth in ponds by limiting sunlight penetration.
    • Water lilies create habitat for aquatic animals, offering shelter and breeding grounds for fish and amphibians.
    • In culinary uses, some cultures have used the seeds and rhizomes of certain water lily species as a food source once properly processed.
    • The flowers of water lilies can be used in floral arrangements, adding an exotic touch to bouquets and centerpieces.
    • Water lilies can act as natural water filters, helping to improve the water quality of ponds and water gardens by absorbing nutrients and contaminants.
    • Some water garden enthusiasts use water lilies for competitive purposes, participating in shows and contests that rate the beauty and cultivation of the flowers.
    • Photographers and filmmakers often use water lilies as a picturesque element in their work to capture serene aquatic landscapes.
    • The fibrous root systems of water lilies can stabilize pond banks and prevent erosion by holding soil in place.
    • Water lilies can be a source of inspiration for educational activities, where children can learn about plant biology and aquatic ecosystems through observation and interaction.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The Water Lily is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The Water Lily is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Peace and tranquility: Water lilies, in general, are often associated with peacefulness due to their serene appearance on the surface of ponds and lakes.
    • Purity: The water lily emerges from murky waters clean and unsoiled, symbolizing purity of heart and mind.
    • Enlightenment: In Eastern cultures and religious traditions such as Buddhism, the water lily represents enlightenment as it rises from dark waters to bloom in the light.
    • Rebirth: Since the water lily can blossom daily, it symbolizes rebirth and renewal.
    • Beauty: The water lily, particularly the 'Aurora' with its changing colors, represents a unique and delicate beauty.
    • Femininity: With its soft and graceful form, the water lily often signifies femininity and beauty.
    • Creation and life:The growth pattern of water lilies, rooted in the earth and blooming on water's surface, depicts the idea of creation and the essence of life.

Constantly submerged
500 - 2500 Lux
Every year
Spring-Early Summer
As needed
  • water dropWater

    For the Hardy Water Lily 'Aurora', watering is not done in the traditional sense since it is an aquatic plant that grows in water. Instead of watering, you need to ensure it is planted in at least 12 to 18 inches of water above the crown, in a pond or a water garden feature. It is essential to keep the water level consistent and replenish the pond with freshwater as necessary, typically once a week, to compensate for evaporation. During hot summer months, check the water level more frequently, as evaporation rates might increase, requiring more frequent additions of water.

  • sunLight

    The Hardy Water Lily 'Aurora' thrives best in full sunlight. It should be positioned in a spot where it can receive at least six hours of direct sunlight daily. The ideal spot for this water lily is in a pond or water garden that is not shaded by trees or buildings during the peak sunlight hours, ensuring optimal growth and bloom.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Hardy Water Lilies like 'Aurora' can tolerate a wide range of temperatures but perform best in 70 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. They can survive in conditions as low as 35 degrees Fahrenheit, which allows them to overwinter in cooler climates. However, these plants should not be subjected to freezing water as that can damage the rhizomes.

  • scissorsPruning

    Pruning the Hardy Water Lily 'Aurora' is critical for maintaining plant health and encouraging blooms. Remove spent flowers and yellowing leaves regularly to prevent decay in the water. The best time for more extensive pruning and removal of old leaves and stems is during repotting in the spring or summer. Pruning is typically done every few weeks during the growing season.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    The best soil mix for the Aurora Water Lily is heavy loam soil; avoid potting mix that contains peat or bark. Maintain pH between 6.5 to 7.5 to ensure optimal growth and flowering.

  • plantRepotting

    Aurora Water Lilies should be repotted every one to two years to provide fresh nutrients and room for growth.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Aurora Water Lilies thrive in outdoor pond settings where the humidity is naturally higher due to the water environment.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Not suitable indoors; requires a pond or large water container.

    • Outdoor

      Plant in ponds with full sun to partial shade.

    • Hardiness zone

      4-11 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    The life cycle of Nymphaea 'Aurora' Water Lily starts with seed germination or vegetative propagation through rhizomes, occurring in silty or loamy underwater soil, typically in quiet freshwater habitats. The rhizome anchors the plant and sends up shoots to the water surface where leaves, known as lily pads, unfurl to float and provide photosynthesis. After the leaves expand, the Water Lily produces solitary, floating flowers that open in the morning and close by late afternoon, showing a succession of color changes over several days from pale yellow to red. These flowers are pollinated by insects, after which they sink below the surface to develop into a spongy berry-like fruit containing several seeds. Once the seeds mature, they are released into the water to disperse, potentially settling into the substrate to start a new plant. Over time, the parent plant's rhizomes continue to spread, creating more shoots and thus expanding the colony of lilies.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring-Early Summer

    • The Water Lily 'Aurora', is best propagated by division, which is usually carried out during the growing season, specifically in the spring to early summer. This method involves separating a section of the plant's rhizome, which is the water lily's underground stem. The division should include at least a couple of leaves and a portion of the root. Once a suitable segment is cut using a sharp knife, the new piece can be planted in soil specifically formulated for aquatic plants, and placed in a pot that can be submerged in the water. The pot should be placed at a shallow depth initially, and as the plant grows, it can be lowered to its final depth in the pond, which generally ranges between 12 to 18 inches (approximately 30 to 45 centimeters) deep. This approach encourages new growth and allows the young plant to establish itself gradually.