What Are the Best Tips for Growing Canna?

Dee S.
Dee S.

For many people, growing Canna is fairly easily, especially if the conditions are right. As long as the Canna, or Canna lily, has plenty of sunlight, moist soil, and warm weather, it will grow quite well. Although many people choose to start with young plants or root-like rhizomes, growing Canna from seeds may be possible as well.

Woman with a flower
Woman with a flower

One of best tips for growing Canna is to be aware of the conditions surrounding the plant. For example, it generally will grow best in full, direct sunlight or even partly shaded areas. The plants should also be protected from strong winds, especially when they grow in height, even if they are staked to prevent breakage. The soil also must drain well and, most importantly, these plants prefer to have plenty of water. In fact, if the rainfall is less than 1 inch (about 2.54 cm) each week, the Canna plant will need to receive supplemental water.

Other tips on growing Canna depend on the climate of the area. For example, in tropical areas, these plants can grow all year long in outdoor gardens. In other areas where the temperatures dip, especially in those areas where frost may occur, the plants should be moved indoors in winter. At that time, they can grow well in greenhouses or in warm areas of a home. In some cases, the root-like rhizomes can be dug up and stored until winter passes and frost is no longer a threat.

There are some planting tips that can help people interested in growing Canna as well. For example, the rhizomes should typically be planted anywhere from 1 foot (about 30.5 cm) to nearly 4 feet (about 121.9 cm) apart. It also is often recommended to plant the rhizomes about 6 inches (15.2 cm) deep. After the Canna rhizomes are planted in the ground, many expert gardeners recommend covering the area with a light ground cover to keep everything moist.

Sometimes, a gardener may want to grow Canna from seeds. In such as case, the seeds must be in perfect condition to transform into a thriving plant. After selecting the best seeds, the casing of the seed should be chipped to help the plant emerge. Then, the seeds should be soaked in water for several days. Initially, they should be grown in small containers, then transplanted to larger containers or moved outside into a garden bed.

In the warmest conditions, the plants may stay in the soil season after season. In those cases, tips for growing Canna include dividing the rhizomes every few years. The best time to split them is after the rhizomes become clumped in a bunch.

Dee S.
Dee S.

Dee is a freelance writer based in Colorado. She has a B.A. in English Literature, as well as a law degree. Dee is especially interested in topics relating to medicine, legal issues, and home improvement, which are her specialty when contributing to wiseGEEK.

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