I don't recall that I had ever seen Lotus flowering in Australia, and when I first saw them in China I was so impressed. Such beautiful flowers.
I had arrived in China in February, and the country was still recovering from one of the coldest winters that they had had. So many trees were devoid of leaves, and it looked terribly depressing to me, but soon it was spring and how things changed. The fresh green foliage appeared on the trees, blossoms bloomed - in fact I was taken to a place famous for peach blossoms. It was quite amazing.
Later I noticed that big ceramic pots had been placed around the "pond" near the entrance to the university. They just looked like pots of mud, but soon the green shoots of the lotus leaves started to appear. Fish and frogs seemed to enjoy playing around the leaves. The "pond" - fact there were two - one on either side of the main driveway, was tiled. Tiled walls and walls. I was to learn later that until a year or so ago, there were no fish, but one of the Chinese teachers felt that the lake should have fish, to she went out and bought a whole lot of gold fish - big ones - and they had thrived and produced more. We would sit on the edge of the ponds and watch the fish or feed them.
As the foliage grew in the pots, the fish and frogs were quite active around the greenery, and soon there were huge leaves poking out of the water. Waterlilies usually create "pads" on the top of the water, but Lotus send their leaves out of the water. Then come the buds. Amazing beautiful buds on the end of a tall stem. Gradually they open, eventually revealing a beautiful flower.
When I was living in the Manly area, I found a dam with Lotus growing near the Old Cleveland Road, and I used to drive past, and sometimes would stop and take photos.
When I moved to Beachmere, one day I accidentally found the big lake at Sandstone Point and the flowers were blooming. Every year I (well, the last three) I have been there to watch the progress of these flowers.
This week I wrote an article about this beautiful lake and its amazing flowers, and won an award for it. You can read the article here.
In four weeks time I will be back in China, but I will not see any Lotus flowers. It is winter. Not the right time of year.