Plumeria Flowers In Chicago

Saturday, May 21, 2011

How To Grow Cannas Successfully

Welcome All Plumeria and Tropical Plant Lovers,
Today I would like to discuss Cannas which
are very popular tropical plants not only in the
United States but other parts of the world as well.

               Canna 'Orange Punch'

Cannas do well in most parts of the United States
and will flourish with plenty of heat and water.

They are very dependable and easy to grow 
providing tropical foliage and colorful flowers from
early summer until Fall frost.

Cannas are available as dwarf cannas (one to two
feet tall), medium height (three to four feet tall), 
and tall size plants (6 feet or more). 

Excellent Dwarf varieties include....
  • Bangkok Yellow with variegated foliage
  • Chinese Coral (aka Pfitzer Dwarf)
  • Jester Pink
  • Japanese Rose
  • Orange Punch
  • Pink Angel
  • Porcelaine Rose

Medium to tall size varieties include....
  • Aida
  • Cleopatra
  • North Star
  • Picasso
  • President
  • Red Futurity
  • Richard Wallace

The foliage ranges in color from different shades
of green to beautifully variegated. 
Cultivars with variegated foliage include....
  • Bangkok Yellow
  • Pretoria
  • Stuttgart
  • Tropicana

Start your canna rhizomes in spring indoors before
planting them outdoors after all danger of frost has
passed. This gives you a head start on the season.

Before planting outdoors, either in pots or in the 
ground, adding some compost, manure, or high
Nitrogen slow release fertilizer to the soil benefits
your canna plants' growth dramatically.

Blood meal is an excellent choice when it comes
to slow release high Nitrogen fertilizers.
Best results are achieved when cannas are planted 
in loose, fertile, and well drained soil which has 
warmed to 60 degrees or more.

In the ground plant the rhizomes about 12 inches
apart. When you grow them in pots, place two
(2) canna rhizomes with space in between with
the growing points in opposite directions in one
single 12 inch pot. This provides a nice display of
foliage and flowers.

Lay the rhizome horizontally on the soil with the
growing eye, if visible, facing upwards. However, this is
not critical as cannas will always grow towards the
surface (because they grow toward the light).

Cannas should be watered regularly and not allowed to
dry out.

Regular dead-heading of spent flowers results in a neat
display of your canna plants.

In addition to your soil additives, regular feeding with
any fertilizer high in Nitrogen is recommended.

Cannas are rarely bothered by insects. If insects
appear, several applications of insecticidal soap
usually take care of the problem easily. 

During one growing season cannas produce three to
five rhizomes for each rhizome planted.

After the first frost in fall remove the top of the plants
and dig the rhizomes to be stored for planting next spring.
Rinse or wash the soil off, divide and dry the rhizomes. 

Layer them with peat in cardboard boxes with lids or in
plastic bags with a few holes for ventilation. You can
store them now in your garage, basement, or any place
which is cool and stays above freezing.

The ideal temperature to store canna rhizomes during
the winter months is between 50 and 60 degrees.

Another storage method is to dig up the whole clump
of rhizomes, cover them with plastic and store them
over the winter at temperatures mentioned above. 

NEVER store them in mesh bags which will allow
the rhizomes to dry out.

Next, for your FREE Tropical Plant Guide, Grow Your
Own Tropical Garden, visit Bob Walsh Plumeria Care 101.
Happy Growing,