Waterlilies on the Mississippi

Waterlilies on The Mississippi River

Waterlilies on The Mississippi River © 2012 Bo Mackison

In mid to late July and early August, the backwater lakes and sloughs are full of floating white water lilies. This waterlily grows in thick patches of lily pads. The flowers of the Fragrant Water Lily are only open three days every year, however a patch of water lilies will have blooms at slightly different times thus extending the bloom viewing season.

This patch of water lilies was in the Stoddard, Wisconsin area of the Upper Mississippi. Three hundred foot high bluffs are on the Minnesota side of the river.

I have quite a few photographs from this trip that have strong horizontal lines, and so I am working on a series of photos with a vintage look. The new series is called “Paper Placemats”, because they remind me of the decorated paper mats so often seen in the tiny diners and cafes along the route. This is #2 in the series. The first photo in the series was  “Tugboat Docked on the Mississippi” posted yesterday.


Bo Mackison is a photographer and the owner of Seeded Earth Studio LLC. She is no longer wondering how the Mississippi River as subject will fit the Seeded Earth theme. Thinking of all the seeds watered by its muddy waters, including these water lilies!

About Bo Mackison

I'm a photographer, book-artist, traveler, naturalist, and creator of the Contemplative Creatives Journey, An Online Workshop and Community and Desert Wisdom Cards and Workshops. Though often not well known, I find the desert a welcoming place - a healing space. Its mysteries and gifts transformed me several years ago. Since that first encounter, I return again and again to fill my well in what most people think of as a desolate region. I'd love to share my desert discoveries and wisdom with you. Please subscribe to receive my five part mini email course The Gifts of the Desert. It's my gift to you.


  1. I’ve been staring at this for a few minutes and can’t think of anything to say other than it’s mesmerizing. It almost makes me feel like I’m riding in a train, in another era. Wonderful, Bo. 🙂

  2. Over the past couple of years as we drive along the Mississippi River close to my home town, my father has often commented how the water lilies have nearly taken over the river — in some cases reducing the actual size of the river significantly. He says “You can almost walk across the river now.”

    Your image is lovely, and I applaud your series. The river, however, has changed since we were younger and living in that area. 😉

  3. When I think of the Mississippi–anywhere–at the rush part, at the sloshing part, at the lazy, steamy Delta, I don’t think of waterlilies. But here they are, blankets of them, so lovingly presented.

  4. Gandalf says:

    Very captivating. Are you sure this is the Mississippi river?

  5. No that’s a lot of water lilies!

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