Canna lilies are low maintenance plants that can be easy to grow. Their flowers and foliage are a welcome sight for any garden. They provide a refreshing burst of color being one of the most colorful summer bulbs.
Let’s look at everything you need to know about growing these flamboyant plants.
Canna Lilies At A Glance
Contrary to its name, canna lilies are not true lilies. They are more closely related to gingers and bananas. These plants have broad, flat, alternate leaves that grow out of a stem in a long, narrow roll that unfurls at the end.
The leaves are typically solid green, but some cultivars have brownish, maroon, or even variegated leaves. Meanwhile, the flowers are typically red, orange, or yellow or any combination of those colors which are aggregated into clusters of spikes of pinnacles.
Planting Canna Lilies
Cannas are best planted outdoors in the late spring and early summer when the soil temperature is about 60°F (15°C) or warmer.
Although they are considered a plant of the tropics, most cultivars have been developed in temperate climates and are easy to grow in most countries around the world as long as they receive at least 6–8 hours of sunlight during the summer and are moved to a warm location for the winter.
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While cannas can be grown from seed, it can be difficult, so for a more reliable propagation, you’re better off planting canna rhizome instead.
Dig a hole 2 to 3 inches deep and set a rhizome in with its eyes facing up. Cover with about one to 2 inches of soil, tamp firmly, and water thoroughly.
Each rhizome should be planted 1 to 4 feet apart when planted on the ground. However, you can also plant cannas in pots.
Cannas can sprout slowly and do not require much water until it shows signs of growth. Typically, it can take up to three weeks for them to sprout. Once this happens, cannas should be watered at least once a week by slowly watering the area around the roots.
In the summer, these plants need a good watering every other day.
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Caring For Canna Lilies
Throughout the growing season, provide consistent moisture to your canna lilies and do not allow the soil to dry out. You can reduce watering after the flowers have bloomed.
Cannas can be greedy feeders so applying a general-purpose fertilizer halfway through the season can be beneficial. This can promote a brilliant display of flowers and foliage.
You can keep canna lilies blooming for as long as possible by deadheading them throughout the growing season. Remove a flowering spike that has no more buds using shears or a sharp knife down to the next side shoot.
Once the stem is spent, it can be removed from the base at the end of the season.
Canna lilies aren’t prone to diseases. However, rust, fungal leaf spot, and bacterial blight may happen when they are overwatered or crowded.
Plus, caterpillars, slugs, snails, and spider mites may damage its leaves. However, other pests do not affect canna lilies.
Do you grow cannas? Share your success tips with us!
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