Nelumbo Adans., widely known as lotus, is an important genus of perennial aquatic plants with considerable ornamental value (Du et al., 2018). There are only two species: Nelumbo nucifera Gaertn. and Nelumbo lutea Willd. Nelumbo nucifera, which is widely distributed in Asia and Oceania, has diverse flower colors, including red, pink, and white, and its flower forms include single, semidouble, double, duplicate layered, and thousand petaled. Nelumbo lutea is native to North America and the Caribbean, and is characterized by yellow flowers, with fewer than 30 petals. More than 2000 germplasms of Nelumbo spp. exist in Asia, where the lotus has been widely cultivated for more than 3000 years (Zhang et al., 2011, 2019).
With the aim of creating new cultivars with attractive flowers, interspecific hybridization of lotus plants has been used extensively (Shi et al., 2018). In recent years, cultivars with red flowers have been receiving increasing attention in Asian markets. After years of selection from the progeny of interspecific hybrids, we obtained a cultivar, Nelumbo ‘Jiang Luopao’, with deep purple-red, double-layered flowers. Moreover, the deep purple-red staminal appendages are unique to the lotus germplasm. In 2020, the new cultivar was officially authorized under the protection of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs of China (CNA20183363.1).
Du, F.F., Liu, X.J., Ding, Y.S., Shi, N., Chang, Y.J. & Yao, D.R. 2018 A new cultivar of ornamental lotus ‘Qinhuai Danzhuang’ Acta Hort. Sin. 45 1015 1016
Shi, N., Liu, X.J., Du, F.F., Chang, Y.J., Li, N.W., Ding, Y.S. & Yao, D.R. 2018 ‘Jin Dieyu’: A new cultivar of lotus with large, yellow-green, duplicate-layered flowers HortScience 53 732 733
Zhang, D.S., Chen, Q., Liu, Q.Q., Liu, F.L., Cui, L.J., Shao, W., Wu, S.H., Xu, J. & Tian, D.K. 2019 Histological and cytological characterization of anther and appendage development in Asian lotus (Nelumbo nucifera Gaertn.) Intl. J. Mol. Sci. 20 1015