VAUGHAN FLEMING / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY VAUGHAN FLEMING / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Queen Victoria water lily (Victoria amazonica) leaves, floating on the surface of a pond. This water lily (family Nymphaeaceae) is a native of Brazil, where it grows in calm waters along the Amazon river. Its leaves (seen here), supported by spongy ribs on the underside, can reach 2 metres in diameter. A lip runs around the circumference of each leaf, notched in two places to allow collected rain water to drain away.
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