Re: Aquatic Plants Digest V2 #234 Lotus in France

Aquatic-Plants-Owner at ActWin_com wrote:
> Aquatic Plants Digest      Thursday, 3 October 1996      Volume 02 : Number 234
> From: bornette at biomserv_univ-lyon1.fr (Gudrun BORNETTE)
> Date: Thu, 3 Oct 1996 09:17:22 +0100
> Subject: Lotus in France...
> I have seeds of Lotus, do I have any chances to obtain plants? 
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> |        Dr Gudrun BORNETTE chargee de recherche CNRS     |
> |                      ESA CNRS 5023                      |
> |           Universite Claude Bernard Lyon 1              |
> |               69622 VILLEURBANNE CEDEX                  |
> |     Tel : (33) 72 43 12 94 - Fax : (33) 72 43 11 41     |
> |         Email : bornette at biomserv_univ-lyon1.fr         |
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You bet you do!
  Lotus are a rather easy plant to sprout and grow.  The biggest
obstacle is in transplanting the seedlings up into larger pots as they
grow.  Seedlings do not take kindly to this process.  The solution is to
grow them in larger containers from the start. The container should not
have any holes in it as the lotus will exit the pot, thus ending your
chances for success.  Lotus grow in a runner/linear fashion,  sort of
like strawberries, but with young lotus plants, if you lose the leader,
you probably lose the plant.  The most recent growth, called the 'tip',
is critical to the plant.  If this is lost, the plant usually cannot
grow further and dies.  When potting up, do not disturb the root ball
any more than you have to.  Simply place it intact, within the next size
pot, and back-fill with dirt.
  The shape of the container is not important as lotus follow any shape
when they grow.  The beginning container should be at least 8" in
diameter, and larger is better.  A square or rectangular container is
fine.  Any other shape will work as long as its minimum width is at
least eight inches.
  Lotus are heavy feeders so the soil should be heavy but the richest
you can find, as long as it does not float!
  The seed may be scarified if you wish.  My trials indicate a slightly
higher germination rate with scarification, but the difference is not
significant (4% with 144 seed, but without proper control studies).  If
you have enough space, and seed, try it both ways.  Lotus seed is
generally fertile if you cannot crush the seed with your fingernails. 
Some lotus seed several hundred years old have germinated and grown on
to bloom.  I can't substantiate this, but reports indicate seed found in
tombs in Egypt, over 2000 years old, has sprouted and grown.  The best
report I can rely on is a mere 700 years of age for seed found in China.
  Seed should be planted about 1" - 1-1/2" under the soil, and water
temperature should be about 75 degrees.
  Lotus are winter hardy if they are not frozen solid.  Here in
Colorado, USA, The temperatures typically drop below 20 degrees F.
several times in a given winter.  Losses are minimal if any.
  Water Quality, within reason, is not significant.  Your water
description sounds great for lotus.  Fertilization should take place
every 3 to 4 weeks during the growing season under average conditions.
  I don't believe fish (including carp) generally bother the plant
itself.  Their digging may be a problem, but if so a cover of gravel
over the soil will deter them.  
  I'm attaching (or sending separately if I can't figure out how to
attach it) a reply to another question that I responded to a while back,
in hopes it may help clarify the explanation I offer you.
  Please feel free to contact me in the future if I might be of help.
  A great resource on watergardening is the International Water Lily
Society BB at www at h2olily_com  and the IWLS email site at
iwls at mtjeff_com
  Wishing you well in this endeavour,