How to grow Canna Lilies?

Discussion in 'Seed Starting / Propagation' started by 2ofus, Feb 14, 2015.

  1. 2ofus

    2ofus Hardy Maple

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    I have never grown them before but I want to try them in my front garden. Should I just plant the bulb or can I start them in the house under grow lights? I live in zone 4b/5a with long daylight hours in the summer but our summer temps are rarely above 100 degrees but our nights can drop down to the high 40's. Is it even feasible to try them?
     
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  3. cajuncappy

    cajuncappy In Flower

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    They grow like weeds around our house I gotta beat them back from escaping their beds. Of course down here in semi tropical South louisiana alls I can tell ya is they like damp feet. Which aint a problem in our yard.:)
     
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  4. marlingardener

    marlingardener Happy

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    Cajuncappy, you are so very right! Here in central Texas Cannas are prolific, to the point that you can hardly give them away. They grow in low spots (damp even in high summer) and in irrigated yards and will take over if you let them.
    If you stand on a street corner with a sign saying "I'd like some Cannas" you'll soon be inundated with rhizomes. It's called "drive-by canna-onzation".
    2ofus, I'd just plant the bulb directly. Starting inside, then transplanting might lose you any advantage gained by an early start. These things are tough, and you ought to have no problem growing them.
     
  5. mart

    mart Strong Ash

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    They will grow on concrete if you spray them with a water hose occasionally .
     



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  6. Jewell

    Jewell Incorrigible Gardener Plants Contributor

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    At my zone the colored calla lilies are marginal. I have white self sown seed that has adapted to the climate and does well. The roots are deep and some years the top/crown will freeze down fairly deep. They have always come back and they are now all along that wall. They are planted against the foundation on the north side of the house so the soil is warmed from its proximity to the foundation. Your summer temps get fairly warm so you might want to try them in the shade and in pots. (My summer temps are from 50-75F). You can always store the tubers during the winter like glads and dahlias. image.jpg
     
  7. 2ofus

    2ofus Hardy Maple

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    Thank you Jewell. I knew that I'd have to store them some way, I just didn't know how. I did check it out on-line and most bulbs need to be stored at 35 to 40 degrees. There is no place in my house or basement that is that cool. We store the potatoes in the garage and they are good all winter but the temperature fluctuates quite a bit. Oh well. If I can talk DH into giving me a little bit of his garage I'm going to get some canna's and dahlia's, just a few. and try them.
     
  8. Netty

    Netty Chaotic Gardener Plants Contributor

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    Our growing season is fairly short here in Southern Ontario, and if I didn't get my Canna's started early inside I wouldn't be able to enjoy their blooms very long. I will be potting up my Canna Lily's mid March for planting out in mid May. I use large pots and good potting soil and they transplant easily.
     
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  9. cherylad

    cherylad Countess of Cute-ification Plants Contributor

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    I'm confused... are you asking about CANNA or CALLA?
     
  10. toni

    toni Mistress of Garden Junque Staff Member Moderator Plants Contributor

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  11. Jewell

    Jewell Incorrigible Gardener Plants Contributor

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    Thanks Toni for the clarification. I had callas not cannas. If you check out cannas they take a little more cold but not to survive your zone.

    You might be able to bury the pots and then cover deeply in straw for the winter and pull them up in the early spring to start. Cannas love the heat unlike callas. Happy gardening. It's fun to see what happens.
     
  12. cherylad

    cherylad Countess of Cute-ification Plants Contributor

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    Cannas grow worst than weeds down here. I love 'em and keep some where it's easy to mow the escapees down.
    I do have some dwarf one's in containers.
    Now for Callas... they seem to like it moist and in mostly shade (especially in the hot summer). I tried some in the ground but couldn't keep them alive. So now I have some in big tubs under a tree. They seem to like it. I actually have one of them in bloom now and another trying to bloom. I just leave them in place year 'round, but cover them with a sheet when we get freezing temps.
     
  13. 2ofus

    2ofus Hardy Maple

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    I'm sorry for the confusion. I didn't realize that canna's are not lilies. :confused:
     
  14. marlingardener

    marlingardener Happy

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    Don't worry,2ofus. Now a whole bunch of us know cannas aren't callas, and how to grow each. Sometimes a bit of confusion can be very educational!
     
  15. cherylad

    cherylad Countess of Cute-ification Plants Contributor

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    I've actually picked up Cannas at the store before thinking they were Callas. I've learned to slow down and read when buying plants now. :frustrated:
     
  16. toni

    toni Mistress of Garden Junque Staff Member Moderator Plants Contributor

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    Canna's do need heat and will be one of the last plants to show green above ground level. Down here they will do so-so in part shade but I think our relentless heat makes up for the difference in sunlight. Mine grow just find even thought their growing area is far from moist, they will bloom better with more moisture though.
    If you do get them to grow this summer, be sure to move them to a cool but not frigid spot for the Winter.
     

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