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May 2010
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Growing Cannas – Dramatic, Tropical Perennials for Any Flower Garden: characteristics, and care.

Canna are a rhizomatous tender perennial with attractive green, bronze, bronzy orange, rich scarlet, purple or striped foliage that come as dwarf, medium and tall plants with a wide range flower colours from pale cream, lemon, apricot-pink, white, gold to vivid yellow, orange, red, scarlet and deep crimson. The flowers may be fringed, striped or self-coloured.
Cannas are tropical and subtropical flowering plants with large, banana like leaves. They can be grown as annuals in cooler regions, where they add an instant touch of the tropics to gardens. A surge in interest and hybridizing has resulted in a dazzling array of cannas to choose from.

Growing Conditions for Cannas

– Prefers rich, moist soil and full sun.
– Generally grown from rhizomes.
– Plant rhizomes 4-5 inches deep, after all danger of frost, or start indoors in pots.
– Keep the rhizomes moist, but not wet.
– Emerged plants can receive more water.
– It can also be grown in poorly drained areas and in shallow ponds.
– Sow canna seeds directly in the intended location or in Styrofoam cups in a moist sowing medium.
– The seeds will germinate within a week’s time.
– Divide roots during spring time and plant them in a sunny spot in well draining soil.
– Alter the soil composition with plenty of organic matter.
– Maintain soil pH at 6.1 to 7.5.
– Dig a hole deep enough to contain the entire root ball, and mulch around it to keep the soil moist.
– Space canna plants two feet apart. Water your canna lily plant well as they tend to dry out fast, besides they love plenty of moisture.

Maintenance of Cannas

– Plants should be dead headed for continual bloom.
– Cannas like to be fed. Fertilize in early spring and mid-summer.
– In zones 7 and below, rhizomes can be overwintered.
– Allow foliage to be killed by a frost.
– Dig plants, leaving soil attached to rhizomes.
– Allow to dry, then pack in plastic bags with some moisture.
– Keep in a cool location for the winter.
– Potted cannas can be brought inside and treated as houseplants.

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