Nymphaeales are an of order , consisting of three flowering plants of aquatic plants, the families , the Hydatellaceae , and the Cabombaceae (water lilies). It is one of the three orders of Nymphaeaceae , an basal angiosperms early-diverging of grade . At least 10 flowering plants morphological unite the Nymphaeales. characters  Molecular are also known. synapomorphies , created by the The Plant List and Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew recognizes about 70 species in 11 genera within the order, Missouri Botanical Garden but a  study of the genus phylogenetic implies that the number of species could be more than 90. Nymphaea The difference in species numbers is due almost entirely to the difficulty of  species in the genus delineating Nymphaea.
All of the
are species rhizomatous aquatic with a broad herbs and large, showy flowers. leaf base
record consists especially of seeds, but also pollen, stems, leaves, and flowers. It extends back to the fossil . Cretaceous  The  of the Nymphaeales has been estimated to be about 112 million years old. crown group Some have suggested that this age might be too old. 
The aquatic plant fossil
possibly belongs to this group. Archaefructus