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Lotus effect

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The lotus, isn't that a kind of floating water lily? Not exactly. Lotuses don't grow on the water, but above it. These sacred flowers rock gently in the wind. They spring up from the muddy bottom, but there’s not a speck of mud on the petals: lotuses literally let everything slide off them. There's a word for that: lotus effect.

Lotus ponds freeze time because they shows all the phases of life at once, the buds and the flowers, but also the seedpods. These look like shower-heads and contain the seeds for new plants to come. When? In 100 years, or 200, or 300? Last year the Botanic Gardens in Hefei, China had a lotus on display which had sprung from a seed from the early Ming dynasty, 600 years ago. Germinative power, that is what it's all about. Sometimes waiting for the right circumstances takes ages, but it's never too late to flourish.

Photography: Dietlind Wolf