James Knock, who lives in the United Kingdom, has been a dedicated collector of Strawn waterlily cultivars for many years and is an expert in their identification and cultivation. Most cultivars were obtained directly from Strawn Water Gardens in the years 1994 through 1998.

In these galleries, James takes us through seasonal and age related changes in coloration of many Strawn cultivars. High summer in England, sometimes only two to three weeks long, provides the most dramatic colors of all, often not seen in other climates. None of the images have been color enhanced or color adjusted.  

James Knock's Tribute
to the
Brilliance of Kirk Strawn

Photos & Notes © James Knock, www.fishponds.com - Click images to enlarge


High summer

A truly astonishing water lily. This hybrid really set a new standard for hardy lilies, not to mention a new colour range. The colours exhibited by this variety in just one growing season can be quite unbelievable. The overall colour effect is hugely influenced by the temperature and intensity of sunlight the plant is receiving.


Early season >


  After our cool springs here in the U.K. I am often greeted with some of the most amazing two-tone flowers of a rich salmon pink and yellow combination. As the weather warms up and the light levels increase, the pink colouration gradually merges with the yellow in successive flowers, until eventually they become one shade. Plants then take on a totally new look and you could easily be forgiven for thinking it a different plant entirely. 


^ High summer >

  Plants in high summer have what I would best describe as a salmon orange colouration. From a distance this colouration is particularly striking. This is greatly enhanced by the fact that flowers are held high above the foliage on particularly sturdy stems. So exotic looking is this plant that I am often asked if its a tropical water lily.

Young, early summer

Young, summer ^ >


Young, high summer

Young plants show the same colour metamorphosis as mature plants.
I think its worth noting that some of the colours this plant exhibits may not be present when it is grown under climatic conditions different than mine. Very strong intense sunlight may have a bleaching effect on some of the colours.

Naturally this hybrid is extremely free flowering and even tiny plants will flower away without a care in the world. Many lilies will stop flowering when space-confined, but not this one. Although I would class it as a medium sized lily, it makes a great plant for any pond or even a tub.

Due to its N. mexicana parentage plants will remain evergreen where the climate allows. I have often witnessed flower buds reaching the surface in the middle of winter. Although they fail to open, it doesn't stop this plant trying time and time again.
 It can be viviparous, making new plants from its flowers.


Late summer

High summer

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Strawn by Knock Introduction | Gallery Index Complete 300K
For shorter downloads:
N. 'Barbara Davies' through N. 'Clyde Ikins' | N. 'Colorado' through N. 'Liou'
N. 'Little Sue' through N. 'Pink Pumpkin' | N. 'Pink Sparkle' through N. 'Yuh Ling'

N. 'Colorado' by other photographers

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