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Victoria amazonica (giant waterlily)

Queen of the water lilies, this Amazonian giant has a remarkable life cycle.
Inside Kew's Waterlily House

Inside Kew's Waterlily House

Species information

Scientific name: 

Victoria amazonica (Poepp.) J.C. Sowerby

Common name: 

giant waterlily

Conservation status: 

Not known to be threatened.

Habitat: 

Lakes and backwaters of the Amazon River.

Key Uses: 

Ornamental.

Known hazards: 

None known.

Taxonomy

Subclass: 
Superorder: 
Nymphaeanae
Order: 
Nymphaeales
Family: 
Nymphaeaceae
Genus: Victoria

About this species

Victoria amazonica is well known for its huge circular leaves, which are often pictured with a small child sitting supported in the centre as a demonstration of their size and strength. The species is highly prized as an ornamental, despite having somewhat particular requirements for successful cultivation.

Synonym: 

Victoria regia Lindl.

Genus: 
Victoria

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Students learn about plant taxonomy and identification

Kew offers a variety of specialist training courses in horticulture, conservation and plant science.

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