A perennial evergreen aquatic plant native to China and India, the Euryale ferox has fleshy roots, sunk in the ground, and long stems branch out which bring to the surface a bizarre roundish mass of thorns, which in some days opens and becomes a large round leaf. dark green, with purple veins, covered with thorns, especially on the lower side.
The rhizome of the plant is short and not very branched; from it start of long petioles that join with the central part of the leaf, in turn covered with spines of variable length between 4 and 5 cm, arranged both on the upper face and on the lower one.
The leaves become of dimensions between 60 and 90 cm, and every 7-10 days new leaves emerge, which remain floating.
In spring this plant produces curious cup-shaped flowers, pink, red or purple, with white outer petals, which often bloom underwater, being self-fertile and therefore not requiring exposure to air for pollination. In summer it produces round, edible berries containing seeds. These berries are widely used in Asia as a food and are consumed as a snack after roasting, like popcorn. In the Chinese tradition, the seeds of auryale have anti-aging properties and are also consumed for this special characteristic.
Often called also with the name of Gorgone, Euryale ferox is a perennial plant that grows in its Asian areas of origin as a perennial. In our ponds and ponds, however, this plant can only be grown as an annual outdoor plant.
Place the euryales in a sunny position, or in partial shade, in a not too deep pond or in very calm streams. This plant fears the cold, so in winter it must be collected at home, in large tubs or containers; it is often cultivated as an annual, planting new seedlings every year, or sowing the seeds of the previous year directly on the bottom of the basin; this practice also solves the problem of the size of the plant, which could grow excessively over the years.
The roots of euryale sink into loose and sandy soils; this plant needs frequent fertilization to take on a luxuriant appearance, therefore supplying fertilizer for aquatic plants, often marketed in practical tablets, every week in the period from March to October. In artificial environments such as ponds and ponds, the fertilizations become more important than in natural environments.
it happens by seed; the seeds should be stored throughout the winter in a container filled with sand, which should be kept in the refrigerator, or in any case in a place with a temperature close to 5-6 ° C. In spring sowing is carried out, placing the seeds in a tray containing sand and peat in equal parts, which must be placed under water until the seedlings are completely germinated, which must be placed on the bottom of a pond. If desired one can sow the euryal directly to the dwelling.
Euryale ferox: Pests and diseases
Sometimes the black aphids can infest the plants of Eurale ferox ruining the new leaves.