The fondness, even reverence, that a diverse array of countries, cultures and religions harbor for the lotus traces all the way back to depictions etched out in hieroglyphics from ancient Egypt.
Botany, as much as beauty, explains the enduring enchantment of the lotus. Cultivated in mud, the lotus emerges above the waterline over a three-day period before opening up to soak in sunlight from the morning till mid-afternoon.
“I first came across the lotus while taking my children out on a boat in the Everglades,” remembers Geoffrey Smith. " Even with all the magnificent wildlife in the River of Grass to draw your eye, the lotus is impossible to miss- it's absolutely mesmerizing."