Huge water lilies—Victoria amazonica and Victoria cruziana—have leaves that can measure up to nine feet in diameter. They are native to the shallow waters of the Amazon River basin. Flowers are white the first night that they open and become pink the second night and are pollinated by scarab beetles.
While the expansive leaves are delicate, the plant can support 70 pounds IF the weight is distributed across the surface. The girl pictured here stands on a wood sheet.
The plant was named for the new Queen Victoria in 1837. . . It isn’t every day that someone names a gigantic plant after you.
Image: Lily pond in front of the Linnaean House of the Missouri Botanical Garden, 1902.