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Herbs perennial, aquatic. Rhizomes branched, repent, forming swollen terminal storage tubers late in growing season. Leaves arising from rhizome, alternate, emersed or floating, long petiolate; leaf blade centrally peltate, veins radially extended. Flowers solitary, axillary, long pedunculate, bisexual, hypogynous, actinomorphic, entomophilous, borne above water surface. Tepals numerous, distinct, outermost reduced, inner ones larger and petaloid. Stamens numerous; anthers dehiscent by longitudinal slits. Pistils numerous, simple, separately and loosely embedded in cavities on flattened top of receptacle. Ovary 1-loculed; ovule 1, pendulous; styles very short; stigmas capitate. Fruit nutlike, indehiscent. Seeds without endosperm and perisperm; embryo large; cotyledons 2, fleshy.

One genus and two species: E and S Asia, N Australia, Central and North America; one species in China.[1]


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The Family Nelumbonaceae is a member of the Order Proteales. Here is the complete "parentage" of Nelumbonaceae:

The Family Nelumbonaceae is further organized into finer groupings including:


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Nelumbo is a genus of water flowers or water lilies commonly known as lotus (Hindi: कमल). The word originates from the Sinhalese word Nelum. There are two species in the genus, one of which is the well-known National Flower of India. Taxonomists disagree as to exactly which family that the genus is in, with many saying that it is part of the Nymphaeaceae (water lily) family, and others saying that it is part of its own unique family, the Nelumbonaceae. However, even among those plant taxonomy systems which recognize the new family, there is disagreement as to which Order that it is in: Proteales, Nymphaeales, or a unique Nelumbonales order. [more]

At least 63 species and subspecies belong to the Genus Nelumbo.

More info about the Genus Nelumbo may be found here.


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  1. Dezhi Fu & John H. Wiersema "Nelumbonaceae". in Flora of China Vol. 6 Page 114. Published by Science Press (Beijing) and Missouri Botanical Garden Press. Online at


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Last Revised: August 26, 2014
2014/08/26 05:47:46