The white water-lily produces Britain's largest flower (4). This plant roots in the mud at the bottom of the lake (5), the circular floating leaves are dark green on the upper surface, and reddish below (2). The flowers also float; the petals are white, often with a pinkish tinge, and the stamens are bright yellow (2). The seeds, which are produced in large quantities, are smooth and olive-green in colour (2).
White water-lily flowers are produced between June and September (6); they are visited by bees, flies and beetles, but it seems that they are often self-pollinated(2). There is much variation in the size of both the leaves and the flowers; certain populations in nutrient-poor waters are much smaller than average (2). These differences seem to have some genetic basis, as even when moved to nutrient-rich waters the plants stay small for a number of years (2).
The native range of this attractive species is not clear, as it has been widely collected and transplanted (3). It is found throughout most of lowland Britain, but is absent from Orkney (2). Outside of the British Isles, it is found in Europe as far north as Scandinavia, but is absent from Iceland and the Faeroe Islands (2).
Transfer of pollen within the same individual plant- either within the same flower, or between different flowers.
The male reproductive organ of a flower, it is made up of an anther (the pollen-producing organ) and a filament (stalk). (See http://www.rbgkew.org.uk/ksheets/pdfs/flower.pdf for a fact sheet on flower structure).
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