CANNA 2018

Discussion in 'Tropical Gardening' started by ARMANDII, Jan 1, 2018.

  1. Verdun

    Verdun Passionate gardener

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    Perfecto mazambo :)
    (Cant be too tidy or too clean for healthiest poss plants:snorky:)
     
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    • roders

      roders Total Gardener

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      First year Cannas only just gone over.
      Just cut them down and drying out a bit before I pack them away ready for even bigger show next year

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      • roders

        roders Total Gardener

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        Cannas 2019.

        I really love Cannas and am learning how to get the best from them.
        Just found this article by Bunny Guinness ,lots of interesting info some of which I was not aware of.

        Cannas: hot, tropical and easy to grow

        Fabulous cannas look bold and architectural, but are far simpler to cultivate than they look
        [​IMG]
        Canna in full bloom: these exotic flowers will last until the first frosts. Photo: GETTY IMAGES

        By Bunny Guinness

        4:21PM BST 19 Oct 2009


        When my horticulturally illiterate husband asked me over breakfast what I was writing about this week, and I replied “Cannas”, he said, “Oh, those really hot looking things?” Nobody can help but notice cannas.

        I have been growing these bold architectural plants for a good 10 years or so, but when I picked Keith Hayward’s brain I learnt some invaluable tips. Keith, with his wife Christine, holds the National Collection, and together they run Hart’s Cannas (see right).

        The first common error that many people make with cannas is deadheading. You should definitely not deadhead a canna. These beauties will flower profusely from July until the frosts as long as you sit on your secateurs. This is because the new flowering shoot comes up within the dead flower and, a month or so later, will produce more flowers. Some flower stems will produce four lots of flowers – unless, of course, you cut them off.

        Because cannas look so lush, tropical and exotic, I had assumed they would produce their best given plenty of sun and a good, moisture-holding soil. Not a bit of it. Keith left some cannas in pots in his polytunnel and totally neglected them; the tunnel became so bone dry that even the weeds shrivelled. The cannas, however, survived without so much as a flop. They will grow taller and thicker with high moisture levels, but in drought they do not stop performing. Their bright flower colours look fabulous in full sun, but it’s not actually good for them as it causes the stronger-coloured foliage – often with purple and striped forms – to fade, and the flower colour to lose strength. Cannas perform best in semi or full shade, so use these striking plants to transform darker, drier parts of the garden.

        As we all have realised this summer, the most useful plants are those able to withstand non-stop rain followed by desert-like dryness. Here another long ball was bowled by Keith. Cannas will grow well in shallow water and swampy ground… he has seen them growing in polluted ditches where they are used to filter out the pollutants. He has grown both Canna 'Lucifer’ and 'Stuttgart’ totally immersed in water and they thrive.

        Related Articles
        Next summer I plan to plunge large pots of my intense pink Canna 'Iridiflora’ in the corners of my long pool to contrast with the flat plates of my white water lily. Canna 'Iridiflora’ is my all-time favourite, and possibly my all-time favourite plant. Also known as C. x ehemanii, this is undoubtedly one of the hardiest and most striking cannas. Mine have been left out in my East Midlands garden for several years now.

        Many gardeners do not grow cannas because they presume the overwintering process requires heat and work. Keith reckons it is safer to lift them all. His preferred method is to lift the large clump of rhizomes after the foliage has been frosted in the light frosts we get up to Christmas. Then he breaks large clumps into two or three, potting them into largish, 10in pots. You can then overwinter them in any frost-free shed or greenhouse. Keep them just slightly moist.

        If you try to store dry tubers, they will shrivel and growth will be curtailed the following spring. When the plants start to push up their red shoots in spring, bring them into a light place, water well and protect them from late frosts. By June, growth of the attractive foliage is well under way and they can be planted out to start to add momentum to the border.

        Yellow streak virus is the biggest enemy of cannas. Carried by aphids, it produces yellow streaking on the foliage, which then becomes deformed. Destroy the infected plants and replant the following year with virus-free plants; the virus is not carried in the soil.

        If you are thinking of new additions to your garden, there are three main groups of cannas, starting with the smaller ones which are 12 to 18in high. These are frequently grown from seed; anyone can do it, it’s easy-peasy.

        They will germinate in about seven to 10 days and flower in about 100 days. Colours including red, white, salmon and yellow are readily available.

        The mid-height group contains some show-stoppers such as Canna 'En Avant’, which has yellow flowers with small red spots. I am about to order seeds of two species: Canna patens and C.warscewiczii. Both are shorter cannas with intense, dark pink-red flowers, the latter with green stems and leaves with red veining in them too.

        The canna 'Wyoming’, which belongs to the taller group (it can easily outstrip 6ft in favourable conditions), is also very striking with its strident dark purple foliage and apricot-orange flowers. The larger cannas cannot, however, be grown from seed.

        The final favourite fact that I picked up about these amazing plants is that they were originally grown for food. Their ability to bulk up quickly means they produce starchy rhizomes in quantity, although these have now largely been replaced with yams as a food. Certain types of canna, though, are still grown for their starch, which is used in noodles and biscuits, and has a slightly aromatic flavour. The thick leaves are useful for thatching and wrapping things in for cooking.

        Mine, however, will be left undisturbed to flower and flourish in my borders until the heavy frosts roll in.
         
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        • Verdun

          Verdun Passionate gardener

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          Roders, keen on cannas here too. Long growing season here means they can flower from late June/early July right through to late autumn :)
          Good article by Bunny Guinness
          Must add a couple more :)
           
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          • Snorky85

            Snorky85 Total Gardener

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            Think I may have to purchase some Cannas this year. :D
             
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            • Verdun

              Verdun Passionate gardener

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              A word of caution Snorky......buy your cannas from a certified supplier. A nasty virus has affected most stocks of them. Not a plant to buy from the garden centre I think
               
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              • JWK

                JWK Gardener Staff Member

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                The best place to buy Cannas are from Harts who hold the National Collection. I have visited on their open day as they are local to me and can vouch for their quality, they definitely are virus free:
                Canna by mail order
                 
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                • Verdun

                  Verdun Passionate gardener

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                  Agree JWK. :)
                  Fatal but I am about to look at their website .....just one more, maybe 2, maybe..........:)
                   
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                  • Verdun

                    Verdun Passionate gardener

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                    Oops! Ordered 3. :)
                     
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                    • HarryS

                      HarryS Eternally Optimistic Gardener

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                      I have bought Canna rhizomes from Harts about 5 years ago . No problem with virus . ( touch wood ! )
                      We need a Canna 2019 thread now don't we ?
                       
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                      • Verdun

                        Verdun Passionate gardener

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                        Yes Harry, yes we do :)
                         
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                        • joolz68

                          joolz68 Total Gardener

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                          My Omega is still in a pot outside,too big to drag in,ehemanii is still planted ,fingers crossed for 2019 show :spinning:
                           
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                          • Verdun

                            Verdun Passionate gardener

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                            All my cannas...in the ground and in pots...remain outdoors over winter. Relatively mild down here but cannas are prob hardier than many think :)
                             
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                            • JWK

                              JWK Gardener Staff Member

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                              [​IMG]

                              CANNA 2019
                               
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                              • joolz68

                                joolz68 Total Gardener

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                                I think a lot comes down to wet winters and cold early springs,i think they can only take so much for so long n they start to rot,size of the rhizome helps too no doubt..i lost about 100 a few yr back leaving them planted,luck of the draw in derbyshire :)
                                 
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