Our Story


I’m Marilyn Eigsti, owner of Wonderful Water Lilies. My husband and I were members of our local pond club and marveled at all of the new water lilies we learned about, but could not find at our local nurseries. The solution became obvious after retirement – we would start an aquatic plant nursery so others could also find the plants they wanted.

My husband was a plant geneticist and could advise me on the finer points of growing plants. He was also willing and able to do plumbing, electrical, and construction work. On the other hand, I retired from being a college professor and clinical social worker giving counsel to adults. These skills fit nicely with the nursery. I could solve plant problems (not people problems) and teach customers about the plants.

One thing was missing; someone to give advice on aquatic plants. Paula Biles was that person. She had been president of our pond club and executive director of the International Water Lily and Water Gardening Society. She has written extensively for pond magazines, as a member of the Garden Writers Association. She is a librarian by education and she soaks up information like a sponge. Happily, she has been very generous in sharing her knowledge with me. Additionally she has given support and encouragement about business matters. Since starting Wonderful Water Lilies in 2007 she has been involved. We have met monthly for a “fling” to exchange information, visit nurseries, etc. Thank you Paula for your advice and friendship.

A big thank you to all of our customers. You have been kind, referred your friends, and returned as customers. You motivate and share your knowledge as well.