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How to Grow Canna Plants

Homeowners who grow Canna plants, do so for two big reasons. First, these plants have bright and attractive foliage. Second, they have colorful gladiolus-like flowers. Colors include light orange, pink, coral, and apricot. Isn't it about time you started growing Canna plants, too!?

Cannas are native to Asia and Latin America. They are also called "Indian Shot", getting their name from their hard, pea-like seeds. There are many varieties suitable for your garden, or for use as container plants. There are even varieties of this plant that is grown in water. Plants grow from 18 inches to six feet tall, depending upon variety.

 Note: These flower attract hummingbirds.....cool!


Plant Propagation:

Most home gardeners grow Cannas from Rhizomes. After the plants have died back in the fall, dig up the roots. Clean and store them in a cool, dark area until planting the following spring. Canna plants can also be propagated from seed.

In southern areas, they can remain in the ground over winter. Add a heavy layer of mulch to protect the rhizomes from freezing.


How to Grow Canna Plants:

Plant rhizomes in the spring. Canna plants prefer a rich, organic soil. Plant in full sun. Canna needs plenty of water, but soil should be well draining (except varieties grown in water).

Divide roots, leaving one or two growing tips on each section. Plant roots 3 to 4 inches deep, separated one to three feet apart. Mix in plenty of compost and organic matter during planting.

Apply a nitrogen rich fertilizer once a month for optimum growth. Keep soil moist all season long.

Mulch around plants heavily every year to help retain water, and to replenish organic matter.

Avoid overcrowding plants. Separate and replant established plants every three to four years.

In the fall, dig up the roots for storage.  The roots will survive over-wintering outdoors only in the warmest areas of the country.  


Insects and Disease:

Insect and disease problems are infrequent. Use insecticides, organic repellents, and fungicides as needed.


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