Basic guide to growing lotus
Step 1: find the right container
Lotus look and grow best in a confined container.
Round containers are better than square ones, so the runners can grow without getting jammed in the corners. The water lily baskets are not suitable because the runners expand outside the basket through the holes. The container needs to be deep enough to allow 5cm of water minimum above your soil level.
When you buy a Lotus from Plant Zone Direct, you can leave your Lotus in its container and place this one in a bigger decorative pot or straight into your pond.
Step 2: provide the right type of soil
Lotus prefers a soft, clay loam soil to allow the runners to freely spread. Avoid using potting mix and soil containing peat or pumice as the light material will float to the surface. Make sure the soil does not contain any extra nutrients, osmocote or fertiliser as they will leach into the water and stimulate unwanted algae.
We sell our own blend of Aquatic soil if you need to top up your container or repot your lotus.
Step 3: find the right position
You can grow lotus in a big or small pond, or contain it in a decorative container for your patio or deck. The plant thrives in full sun, but needs to be sheltered from high winds. The hotter the water, the better for the growth of the Lotus as heat stimulates foliage and bloom.
Keep in mind when growing Lotus in your pond that deeper waters are cooler, and could slow the growth of your Lotus. Keep the plant in a frost-free area. If you choose a pond with fish, add a layer of light stones in your container to keep them from burrowing into the soil and loosening the tubers.
Step 4: care for your lotus
Fertilize regularly during the growing season, only with adequate Aquatic plant food to avoid algae. Make a hole in the soil with your finger and bury the fertiliser tablet. We sell a wide range of Aquatic plant fertilizers and other requirements.
When trimming old or wilting leaves, avoid cutting under the water line. Water may get in the stem and cause the tuber to rot.
You can divide your Lotus plant every year by replanting new tubers in another container. Use a layer of low nutrient aquatic soil at the bottom, then a layer of compost and top it up with another layer of soil with some thrive Aquatic fertilizer tablets.
Step 5: enjoy the view
In ideal conditions, Lotus can grow up to 1.5m in height and leaf diameter can reach 60cm across.
Depending on your location and the Lotus variety, the plant may not produce any flowers in the first years but the foliage is spectacular. The beautiful flowers last about 2 or 3 days.
The plant will go dormant in winter when the temperature is cooler.