Los Angeles Times

Rare mutated lotus flower blooms in southwest China

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A rare mutated large versicolor lotus flower with unique colors combing red and white has recently blossomed in southwest China's Yunnan Province, attracting attention from both experts and visitors, as the mutated flower is extremely rare from among the already rare versicolor lotus flowers endemic to the local region. From late May to mid-September every year, the rare versicolor lotus flowers are in full bloom in the Puzhehei Scenic Area of the Wenshan Zhuang and Miao Autonomous Prefecture in Yunnan. The large versicolor lotus is a rare Chinese lotus species as the flower is white with petals in green and yellow and with the flower edges in red and purple. It is ranked the first among many lotus varieties in terms of the bud shape, bud color, flower diameter, petal number and petal length. Its petals are dotted with unique color spots which makes it very rare from among the nearly 1,000 lotus varieties.

Experts with the Xishuangba­nna Tropical Botanical Garden of the Chinese Academy of Sciences say there is only one such mutant flower in every 100,000 lotus flowers, which is even lower than the possibilit­y of appearance of twin lotus flowers.

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