E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia

Nymphaea leibergii Morong
small white waterlily (Leiberg's waterlily)
Nymphaeaceae (Water-lily family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants
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Distribution of Nymphaea leibergii
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Species Information

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Perennial aquatic herb from a thick, erect rhizome; stems slender; stolons lacking.
Floating, arising from the tips of the rhizome, without blotches or dots, heart-shaped, the blades 2-15 cm wide, 3-19 cm long, long-stalked.
Inflorescence of showy flowers that open in the morning and close in the afternoon, 3-7.5 cm wide; petals white, 8-15, equal to the sepals; sepals 4, 2-3 cm long; stamens yellow; stigmatic disk margin appendages 0.6-1.5 mm long.
Berry-like capsules, leathery, many-seeded, rupturing irregularly with a jelly-like seed mass; seeds egg-shaped, 2-3 mm long, 1.5-2 mm wide.
Closely related to N. tetragona with which it has been confused in BC and elsewhere.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Lakes, ponds and slow-moving streams in the montane zone; rare in NE BC; E to PQ and S to ME, MI, MN, MT and ID.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


The climate type for this species, as reported in the: "British Columbia plant species codes and selected attributes. Version 6 Database" (Meidinger et al. 2008), is not evaluated, unknown or variable.

Synonyms and Alternate Names

Nymphaea tetragona subsp. leibergii (Morong) A.E. Porsild
Nymphaea tetragona var. leibergii (Morong) B. Boivin

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

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General References