Today we once again feature a photograph from the album of annkelliott, which provided us with an equally lovely image of a different yellow flower last month. We begin the day’s entry with an excerpt from Ann’s account of her encounter with this particular aquatic perennial species, and we then include a few further lines of relevant details.
"Two days later, I am STILL on a natural high after seeing these gorgeous wild yellow pond-lilies for the very first time. We spent a full day on Thursday botanizing the Bentz Lake Natural Area, north of Calgary and west of Sundre, and these yellow pond-lilies were growing near the edge of the lake. To get to them from the forest where we were exploring, we had to make our way through a very watery bog…Apart from one small mishap that left one friend soaked to his upper thighs, we managed it with only soaking wet feet. This native, aquatic member of the water-lily family grows in lakes and ponds from June to August. The yellow flower is 4-7 cm. across, and has 6 petal-like sepals and several small, inconspicuous petals."
A thick stalk supports the floating leaves and the terminal, cup-shaped flower of the pond-lily that Ann encountered. The flower bears between 8 and 17 sepals, and between 10 and 20 tiny petals that are partially concealed by the stamens. The plant is widely distributed throughout western Canada, and it generally thrives in shallow, slow-moving freshwater at lower elevations. In early fall, the flower gives way to a tough capsular fruit that releases a thick cluster of edible seeds into the surrounding water.
Parts and extracts from the plant have a long and diverse history of medical application, with addressed afflictions ranging from ulcers, broken bones, and sore joints to tuberculosis, heart disease, asthma, and chest pains.
Thank you for this stunning photograph, Ann.