One of the many surprises was the lack of mosquitoes throughout the park given that August is peak mosquito season in DC and this was a marsh. Apparently dragonflies prey on mosquito larvae and help eliminate them. During the interpretive tour we smelled the lotus (hints of spice and fennel), learnt a little more about cattails and wild rice and finally saw the "other" lily ponds. Since the lily has many natural pods, it is first bred in separate ponds behind the Visitors Center and then introduced into the main ponds. The lilies were clearly our favourites with their fascinating colors and even more fascinating names.
And amongst them all, this one, called Blue Smoke was the one that got my vote.