Each year the International Waterlily and Water Gardeners Association holds a competition for the best new waterlily hybrid. Entrees are sent from around the world to compete in this prestigious competition. The competition takes place in a different location each year.
In 2008 the competition was held at Sara P. Duke gardens in Durham, N. Carolina. All the competitors sent their best new waterlily hybrids to the gardens in May of that year. The plants were potted and grown by Tamara Kilbane and her staff at the gardens. After the plants matured they were judged by visitors to the gardens as well as voting on line by looking at the photos displayed. More than 800 votes were cast with Nymphaea ‘Southern Charm’ taking second place in the waterlily competition.
Nymphaea ‘Southern Charm’ is a tropical day blooming water lily with a unique smoky blue flower. The pads are attractively mottled with maroon streaks across a dark green background. Nymphaea ‘Southern Charm’ is a fast grower and a prolific bloomer most days having more than one flower open. Nymphaea ‘Southern Charm’ was hybridized by Florida Aquatic Nurseries several years ago but only released to the trade last year. We sent it to the annual competition and we were pleasantly surprised to have such an honor placed on it. This award will add to the list of awards Florida Aquatic Nurseries has accumulated with its new waterlily hybrids over the years.