None of them resembles the parents.
It is important to know plant characteristics well enough
to be able to identify them. This knowledge is needed for not
only the hybridizers, but also for propagators and dealers as
well. The propagators who multiply Nymphaea for sale in
particular must know how to identify the waterlilies that they
Occasionally one may neglect or forget to pinch fertilized
flowers until they produce seeds. Seeds germinate and grow in
the same containers as mother plants. Darwin's "Survival
of the Fittest" takes over. Strong new seedling Nymphaeas
overgrow the mother plant and strange new variations appear in
the groups of plants to sell. If the owner does not know plant
characteristics and cull them out, you can imagine what is going
to happen when those plants reach the customer.
Simple visual characteristics of Nymphaea that can
serve as a guide for the beginners are :
Leaf : form, apex, base, sinus, colours -- top and underside.
Petiole (leaf stem) and peduncle (flower stem) : colour, hairy
or not hairy.
Flower bud prior to bloom : form, colour.
Blooming flower : form, inner sepal colour, petal colour, petal
numbers, stamen and pistil colour.
At Pang-U-Bon, we keep a few Nymphaea hybrids for illustration
of these points to visitors. Examples of Nymphaea which
have flowers that look alike are these, our new hybrids producing
dark purple flowers :