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Botanical name: Canna x generalis

Plant type: Flower

USDA Hardiness Zones: 8, 9, 10, 11

Sun exposure: Full Sun

Soil type: Any, Sandy, Loamy, Clay

Flower color: Red, Pink, Orange, Yellow, White

Bloom time: Summer, Fall

Cannas are among the most colorful summer bulbs—as flamboyant as their tropical American ancestry—with ruffled spikes tapering to refined buds.

These perennials come in a vast variety of color and boast immense, often-veined, paddle-shaped leaves and sheathing leafstalks in shades of green or bronze.

With their great reedy canes and palmy foliage, cannas would be magnificent even if they never bloomed. However, they keep blossoming from late spring or early summer to frost.

Turn-of-the-century gardeners so loved cannas that they grew them from seed but this isn't easy; better to leave propagation to experts and buy the tubers.


  • Exotic, tropical creatures, cannas need lots of sunshine and fertile, moist soil but you don't have to pamper them.
  • Cannas can be started in the house in small pots if your gardening season is short.
  • Where not hardy, plant outdoors in early summer—around the same time you'd put in tomato plants.
  • To plant, loosen the soil to a depth of 12 to 15 inches, then mix in a 2- to 4-inch layer of compost.
  • Dig a hole 2 to 3 inches deep and set the rhizome in the hole, eyes up.
  • Cover with soil and tamp firmly. Water thoroughly.
  • Space rhizomes 1 to 4 feet apart.
  • If you grow from seed, note that the germination rate is low and the seeds need to be filed or given an acid bath to break down their hard coat.


  • Cannas do best with a good supply of water, so water the plants during the summer if the rainfall is less than 1 inch per week. Water freely in a dry spell.
  • Keep a thin layer of mulch around cannas to help retain moisture as well.
  • Stake tall varieties if needed.
  • As flowers fade, deadhead to promote continued flowering.
  • Cut each stem to ground after bloom.
  • After autumn frost blackens the foliage, remove the stems and leaves, and lift the rhizomes for winter storage. Store in barely-moist peat or leaf mold in frost-free conditions. Space rhizomes so that they are not touching.
  • In the deep South, let cannas grow without moving them, until the clumps grow very matted. Every 3 to 4 years in the winter, dig up the clumps, separate the roots, and plant them in well-enriched soil.
  • Some gardeners as low as zone 7 have reported that their cannas are getting through the winter without being dug up; just be sure to protect the tubers with a heavy layer of mulch.


  • Slugs, snails, spider mites, and caterpillars may be problems.
  • Rust, fungal leaf spot, and bacterial blight are common.
  • Bean yellow mosaic and tomato spotted wilt viruses can occur.


  • If you are storing cannas over the winter, store in a dry place at 45 to 50 degrees F. Don't let them dry out; sprinkle the sand or soil around them, if necessary.
  • In the spring, cut the tubers apart with a sharp knife so that each piece contains one eye on a substantial piece of rootstock.

Recommended Varieties

  • Dwarf cannas stay under 3 feet tall and are easy to fit into our downsized modern gardens. The 2-1/2-foot-tall 'Picasso' is a yellow-flowered dwarf peppered with freckles.
  • Standard varieties grow 4 to 6 feet tall and need a 20- to 24-inch circle for each hand-size rhizome. 'The President' is  is red, 'Yellow King Humbert' spotless, 'Rosamond Cole' orange-edged gold, and 'City of Portland' salmon pink.
  • Many gardeners love the spectacular, drought-tolerant varieties that reach heights of over 6 feet. One gem is the rich, deep pink 'Los Angeles', which has a large floret and opens out so that you can see the face.
  • 'Bengal Tiger' is stunning even when it's not blooming with green-and-yellow-striped, maroon-edged leaves and bright-orange flowers.

Wit & Wisdom

Flowers are words which even a babe may understand.
–Arthur Cleveland Coxe, American poet (1818-96)



Hello, I went to a garage

By justmissjamey on April 10

Hello, I went to a garage sale last fall and bought some roots/ bulbs of cannas. The lady said they are pretty and red when they grow. I am in central indiana zone 5. When do I plant them in the ground?? I don't want to do it to soon and loose them, but I'm also iching to get out and plant. Lol. Any ideas as to when is a good time??

Canna are planted in the

By Almanac Staff on April 11

Canna are planted in the spring after the last frosts have passed.
Remember that you'll need to dig them up and store over winter in your zone.

Thank you :) when can I tell

By justmissjamey on April 15

Thank you :) when can I tell when the last frost in my area is?? I'm central indiana zone 5...and when will I know to dig them up?? Is there a set month or something I should look for before I do?? I've only seen pictures online what they look like, the lady I bought them from had said she had already cut hers down at that time and that's how she had roots for sale.

I bought my canna at Walmart.

By Ava NJ on April 8

I bought my canna at Walmart. They are yellow with the red speckles on them. I will be planting them mid april 2014. Is it best to plant them away from other flowers? I do not want them to multiply over time and suffocate my other flowers. How far apart should I plant them?

Canna do spread so if you're

By Almanac Staff on April 9

Canna do spread so if you're concerned, we would plant canna in their own garden bed. We're not sure where you live, but cannas are generally dug up annually and stored anyways. You can always dig up the clumps, keep what you wish, and give some of them away!  Another solution is to plant canna in containers to control the spread. Some folks even sink the containers into the ground.

Good morning to you. I am in

By Winston Smith Jamaican on April 4

Good morning to you. I am in Jamaica West Indies. Thanks for your comments to persons like myself. I am contemplating growing cannas as a business opportunity. Can you suggest sources from which I could procure seeds of the various varieties that I have seen in pictures? I would not consider importating rhizomes because of the complications and hassle when one has to import live plants. I do understand the reason for the qurantine and other safety measures. Your prompt response would be greatly appreciated.

when I bought these they said

By carol carlson on April 2

when I bought these they said it was miniature lilies they grew into these gorgeous plants and have been trying to find out what they where ever since

I live in Griffin Ga and

By Donna Rivers on March 28

I live in Griffin Ga and planted my cannas in the ground about the second week in March,how long does it usually take before I see them coming up?

I am in Dallas Ga. and I had

By Deborah J. Mullins on April 14

I am in Dallas Ga. and I had left mine in the pot that they came in over the winter. Pushed the pot under the table I had put all my plants on for winter and totally forgot about them. Three or four days ago I decided to take all the plants outside and when it came to that pot I decided to dig it up to see if there was anything left. They were in great shape,and had already started to sprout. I think as the days are getting warmer they will soon began to sprout and in a week or two you might began to see them come up. I hope this was helpful.

Hi Donna, If the soil is warm

By Almanac Staff on March 28

Hi Donna,
If the soil is warm your should see growth in 2-3 weeks. If the soil and air temps are cool it may take a little longer.

Thank you for your quick

By Donna Rivers on April 4

Thank you for your quick response to my previous question however I am worried that I might have planted my cannas bulb to deep,will they still come up or will they die? I have tried to plant cannas before and they never did come up. Thank you in advance.

Our souces suggest plannting

By Almanac Staff on April 4

Our souces suggest plannting cannas about 4 inches deep, laying them horizontally, with eyes up (if you can find the eyes) in rich, most moisture-retentive soil. Fertlize when you plant with a balanced mix (or per the instructions on the canna packaging) and once a month in the summer.
Some cannas a bog plants and thrive along water banks, other merely desire "wet feet."
Watch for slugs when the shoots emerge. (Could these have already attacked your canna?)

I'm in Boise, ID (Zone 7) and

By dwighttovey on March 23

I'm in Boise, ID (Zone 7) and my wife and I have been growing Tropicanna Black cannas for a couple years. We dig up the tubers in the fall and replant in the spring. The weather has been warming up recently so we were considering getting them back into the planters, but when I went to check on them, I found that while new sprouts have already started (about 6-8" already), there is some white fuzzy mold on some of the rhizomes. Apparently it was too moist in the tubs that we had them stored in? Any thoughts on the impact of that mold? Will I contaminate the soil if I plant anyway? Will it damage the plants any? Should I leave them uncovered for a while and hope that the mold dries out and dies?

Thanks for any comments.

A cottony, fuzzy growth on

By Almanac Staff on March 24

A cottony, fuzzy growth on the rhizomes could be rhizome rot, a fungal disease caused by Sclerotium rolfsii or various species of Fusarium. It can appear in humid, damp conditions.
If you think this is what your rhizomes have, then you can either discard the rhizomes, or perhaps try dipping the rhizomes in a solution of 1 part bleach to 9 parts water (not sure how this will affect growing shoots, though). Dip them just one or two times to try to remove the mold. If they are still moldy, or if they show other signs of disease, such as sunken or mushy or black areas, then discard them. Otherwise, after the dip, dry them with a cloth, and then set them out to dry for a few days in an area above 50 degrees F. You might also separate these plants from others if you grow them outside, just in case they still do have remnants of disease.
When you store them next year, dry them for a few days before storing, and you might try dusting them with an appropriate fungicide (a garden center can advise you about products) to discourage the growth of mold. Don't store in airtight containers; allow adequate air circulation. Keep them dry, dark, and cool, but not freezing.

I planted a few hundred long

By Carel

I planted a few hundred long stem cannas,yellow, red and orange, that I pulled out of a river bed where some garden refuse was dumped in the past.
I planted them next to our river pond, and they flourished immediately, flowering beautifully, but now I am worried that it may invade the river as the waterlevel is only about three feet deep.
Please advise

Is there a way to plant

By R23

Is there a way to plant Cannas without them multiplying and spreading when planted in the ground? I'm getting ready to do my landscaping but would hate to have these popping up in places that I didn't want them to grow...

I have a bunch of very

By Txbluebonnet on March 20

I have a bunch of very invasive cannas and some not-so-invasive ones. My hubby had an ingenious idea to keep them where I want them! He suggested getting a watering trough, burying it to the top edge, filling it with soil and compost, and planting them in it. Viola! Contained!

The best way to keep Canna

By Almanac Staff

The best way to keep Canna under control are to lift the plants, even if you live in the south and don't need to. The roots should be divided in the spring. (Give some away to friends!) Also, canna will form seed if the blooms are not dead headed so remove the spent flowers to keep cannas under control.

I bought plants from nursery

By Rex Marble

I bought plants from nursery last year. Dug up rhizomes for winter because of freezing. I will start the plants this spring in pots and replant in flower beds later. What is the preferred mixture for the pots? 100% potting mix, 50/50 soil potting mix, or another blend?

Start canna rhizomes indoors

By Almanac Staff

Start canna rhizomes indoors 4 to 6 weeks before the average last frost date in your area.  Plant the cannas in large pots.  The rhizomes should be covered with 3 to 4 inches of potting soil.

I live in Central Mo and have

By Laura Reno

I live in Central Mo and have a yellow water canna that I have had in a container water garden in the summer. This is the second summer I have brought it in (this fall I had to cut it out of the pot and put it in a large plastic cat litter container) and left it, in water, couple inches over top of dirt/clay line.
My question is - should I let it dry out some or somehow put something under it for drainage - the leaves keep turning brown on the tips, then dying. However, the only time it has bloomed WAS inside. I have never dried it out and wintered it over that way. Only kept as water plant indoors in a window. Now, with the water down below the clay line... I see new growth coming out....

Please advise,

Thank you!

Hi Laura, Let the canna dry

By Almanac Staff

Hi Laura,
Let the canna dry out a bit and then plant it in moist soil in a container before moving it outdoors in the spring.

It's already in moist

By Laura Reno

It's already in moist soil/clay/rock... I figured I would leave it in the bathroom, where there is a bit more light and not directly above the heating vent and that might help. When it goes outside - it will go back in a container water garden... Also _ I figured I would hold off on more water.. for now.



I love cannas! We live in

By Tina Anderson

I love cannas! We live in deer country. While nothing is deer proof, by chance are cannas deer resistant or are they deer candy?

There is no such thing as a

By Almanac Staff

There is no such thing as a deer-resistant plant, however, cannas are considered "Seldom Severely Damaged." In other words, there are plants that deer would prefer if they had a choice!

Close enough for me to give

By Tina Anderson

Close enough for me to give them a try. Thank you!

I live in Phoenix and I want

By sZman

I live in Phoenix and I want to dig up the rhizomes and spread them further in my flowerbed for next summer. We had a frost, and I cut them back, but did not have time to dig them up. Now I am seeing new growth. Is it too late to dig them up and separate/replant?

You can dig and transplant

By Almanac Staff

You can dig and transplant the cannas now. Cannas are very forgiving.

Wow! What a wonderful source

By Rex Marble

Wow! What a wonderful source of practical information you have provided. Thank you very much!




You can grow the canna

By Almanac Staff

You can grow the canna indoors. It may get very tall, depending on the variety. The plant needs lots of light and some humidity. Leaves will turn yellow if it doesn't get enouch light. Put it close to a sunny window and mist it with water about once a week. Fertilize once a month with a soluble 10-10-10 fertilizer.

I dug my canna bulbs before

By elaine A.

I dug my canna bulbs before the foliage had browned and died. will these bulbs survive for replanting in the spring? thank you.

Many gardeners dig up the

By Almanac Staff

Many gardeners dig up the bulbs earlier; they should be fine.

I repotted my canna lily in

By Dai

I repotted my canna lily in bigger plastic container last month because it was in tiny plastic container and the soil was really compacted. Then I put it in a garage since it is warmer than outdoor and I see 2 new leaves sprouted since then. I noticed stem is a bit dried and peeling tip of stem. Is it normal? It was already like that the day I got it from my relative.
Do I need to do something? Should I feed fertilizer? Too much water? I mist occasionally and water sometime when soil is dryer.

Cannas need warm temps and

By Almanac Staff

Cannas need warm temps and nice moist soil. See our care section on this page. Depending on where you live you may need to prepare the rhizomes for winter storage.

I have no place that is in

By kim bemis

I have no place that is in the 40 to 50 degree range to store my cannas. Will the rhizomes survive in my back bedroom that stays between 60 and 70 degrees?

Storing at 60 to 65 degrees

By Almanac Staff

Storing at 60 to 65 degrees is probably fine. Any higher than 70 and the bulbs are at risk.

We moved into our house (in

By Dawn York

We moved into our house (in Western KY) in April. Here it is the first of October and we have noticed many Canna's coming up. What is the best thing for me to do? I want to keep them, but they are very sporadic throughout my back yard. Most of these have came up where we had a pool this summer.

Cannas are hardy in the far

By Almanac Staff

Cannas are hardy in the far southern and western counties of the state. If you are in zone 7a (see zone map: , you may be able to get away without digging them up.  However, if you want to be sure they'll survive, you need to dig up the rhizomes after a heavy frost. See information above. You can store them and then replant them in the location you prefer in early summer!

I have canna's (about twelve

By Griz

I have canna's (about twelve years now) that have bloomed in the past, but haven't bloomed for the last couple of years. The rhizomes do multiply profusely each year and the foliage is dark green and healthy. I seem to plant them too late, July, each year. Located in southwest PA. I have always used bone meal and osmocote fertilizer when this wrong? What type of fertilizer works best? Do canna prefer a basic or acidic soil ph? Thanks in advance for your advice. I want next season to be my best for blooms!

If the foliage is healthy,

By Almanac Staff

If the foliage is healthy, the lack of bloom is 90% of the time because the cannas are not getting enough direct sunlight.
Or, they need more nourishment. Cannas are very heavy feeders. Any good, well-worked soil will do but it needs to be rich in organic matter; adding fertilizer or amendments on top is not enough. Try conditioning your garden soil with a heavy dressing of manure or compost. Fertilize in mid-season with a good general fertilizer. Are you properly digging up the tubers and storing them in the winter?  Try starting your tubers indoors in containers in a warmer atmosphere before putting them in ground.

I've been watering my cannas

By Andrea Gutierrez

I've been watering my cannas every other day, because it's been in the 90's here in CA. Now my leaves are starting to turn yellow. Is that from over watering?

Yellow leaves are usually a

By Almanac Staff

Yellow leaves are usually a sign of overwatering. Also, canna leaves go yellow when the plant is in a dormant or rest state.
As you suggest it's a watering issue, allow the soil to become dry, but keep it from drying completely with an occasional light watering.

what causes the brown,burnt

By denny seaman

what causes the brown,burnt looking edges on otherwise healthy red cannas (in Missouri)

Canna lilies are native to

By Almanac Staff

Canna lilies are native to the tropics and subtropics, so they're a bit dried out and use to more humidity. Water deeply and slowly at the soil level; don't sprinkle. Also, water thoroughly before and after applying fertilizer to help prevent burn.

I am in the same boat. Just

By Sherrie Bertrand

I am in the same boat. Just bought 3, planned on separating and planing, but
it's September in Utah and getting cool. Where do you fine 50-60 degrees indoors and how do you keep them moist, and not too dry?

You can use moist peatmoss

By Almanac Staff

You can use moist peatmoss for storing or just sprinkle a bit of water on the bulbs during the winter months. The best place to store cannas is a cool basement or a garage. If the area is too cold you can cover the box or bag with a blanket.

My wife bought cannas from

By Pashwood

My wife bought cannas from Royal Dutch, none of them grew. We just got replacement cannas from them. What do we do with them at this time of year? Plant them or store them? We are in Iowa.

Wrap the cannas in newspaper

By Almanac Staff

Wrap the cannas in newspaper and store them in a cool basement or garage in a paper bag or cardboard box. Mist the bulbs a couple of times during the winter months. Plant them outside when the weather warms in the spring.

i am doing this for

By chethan

i am doing this for exhibition

I live in Central Florida and


I live in Central Florida and have 3 orange cannas that we bought last year which flowered continously during the summer/fall. Over the winter, they declined and I cut them down nearly to the ground. This spring they grew back but have barely flowered and the leaves have been browning and dying constantly even though there is also new growth occuring regularly. I don't remember that much browning last year.

I checked for bugs and can't see anything. I have only fetilized them a couple of times with a 6-6-6 slow release product. I water them only occasionally because we have gotten a fair amount of rain this summer. Last year, I know I watered them more often.

Aside from the dirt they were planted in when I bought them, they are essentially planted in sand.

What can I try to fix whatever the problem might be and get them start flowering and stop the leaves from dying?


My Canna are beautiful in


My Canna are beautiful in Michigan. I consider myself a Canna specialist some what.

can I leave just cut them

By kathy lozewski

can I leave just cut them down and leave the bulb in the ground for the winter??

yes you can leave them in the

By jim greenley

yes you can leave them in the ground, providing that the ground does not freeze in the winter.

August dig out We are moving

By Kristyn

August dig out

We are moving in 2 weeks and I would like go take my lilies with me. Can I cut them down and dig up the roof now to overwinter ? Or do I have to replant at my new location?

I also ? about cut down

By Diane Grill

I also ? about cut down cannas.

It's better if you can dig up

By Almanac Staff

It's better if you can dig up the plant, leaves and all, and plant it as soon as possible in the new garden or in a big container. Dig the bulbs when the leaves turn brown in the fall.

I purchased 3 plants in June.

By jammalsmom

I purchased 3 plants in June. I put them in nice size pots and they have grown tremendously. I got them because they were pretty and everyone loves them. I live in Maryland and don't know anything about zones. Could someone explain to me in simple terms how to keep them during the winter. Do I take them out of the pots, bring them in or what. I have other Lillie's but I do nothing special and they come back every year. HELP!

Cannas are winter hardy in

By Almanac Staff

Cannas are winter hardy in zones 7 through 10.
So, it depends on where you live in Maryland. See the USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map to find your zone in Maryland:
After your first killing frost, dig a foot away from the stem and gently loose the soil to dig up the clump out of the ground. Wash the roots off with a spray of water. Cut off the tops of the Canna Lilies and add them to your compost pile. Store the rhizomes  them in a peatmoss, vermiculite, or perlite. Punch holes in it for air circulation. The rhizomes should not dry and shrivel during storage.

Where do you cut the stalk

By jeff olskey

Where do you cut the stalk after the flowers die? ie How do you dead head cannus?

Dead head?

By Betty HOoyman

Dead head?

Take care with canna

By Almanac Staff

Take care with canna lilies. Snip off the spent flower just below the head but do not cut the stalk or you may destroy future blooms. Do not cut the stalks until well after your cannas have stopped blooming and the foliage has turned yellow. Then you can cut down the stalks to one inch above the ground. Unless you live in a mild climate, you will then need to dig up the rhizomes and store for the winter.

Do I cut off the stalk that


Do I cut off the stalk that blooms were on when the canna blooms have turned brown? Will I get another stalk of blooms?

Remove faded flower stalks of

By Almanac Staff

Remove faded flower stalks of cannas so new flower stalks will sprout.

It's first of July, & I've

By Cheryl J.

It's first of July, & I've moved, I have Cannas at my old house. Is it ok to move them now to my new house? My tallest one is fixing to bloom. They will get full sun where I'll be moving them.

You can move the cannas now.

By Almanac Staff

You can move the cannas now. Make sure you get as much of the root system as you can and leave the dirt around the roots. Get the plants in the ground in the new spot as soon as possible and water well. They may experience some transplant shock but should be OK.

Hi .... I just moved in my

By Jennifer W.~ Please Help !!!!!!!

Hi .... I just moved in my new home and have been wanting a tropical jungle for months. Well 3 months ago we noticed that I had 29 Cana plants on the side of my house. We began the process of making the flowerbeds in the front of the house. On one side is my rose bush bed, and on the opposite site the rock/Cana bed.... We aerated the dirt and dug the holes for 3 Cana's; one that has already began the process of blooming his bright beautiful orange flower. Also, another that's at it's point to begin to bloom. Ok well I mixed miracle grow dirt with miracle grow moisture control to keep from roti g the bulb. And planted them. Then on top of the dirt I placed miracle grow 3 month feed and mulch but I also put the pellets from miracle grow that releases water as each plant/root system needs and wants it. Along with mulch on top of it to hold all the moisture. Well, the leaves are starting to turn brown and roll up, and I planted an Asian Lilly in the same garden and its drawing up too...... PLEASE HELP ME TO SAVE MY CANAS AND ASIAN LILLY'S !!!!!!!!!

I would never use miracle

By Tray

I would never use miracle grow moisture control, cause that stuff holds water, which can lead to root rot. Also your plants may just be going threw transplant shock, in which it should recover in time.

You may have catipillers.

By Gail S.

You may have catipillers. Check leaves that are rolled up, if they have silk threads holding the leaves you have catipillars. Spray leaves and ground with bug be gone. Check back after a week. If still evedence is there spray again.

I bought 7 tubers through the

By smitty1931

I bought 7 tubers through the mail. The lady said they were orange flowered/ I planted them in March in full sun. They grew fast down here in SW Florida. They have bloomed continusly since early May. I read somewhere that you should cut the stalk to the ground after it has bloomed. Is this correct?

My cannas have bloomed in

By Carol Kiper

My cannas have bloomed in Tulsa, OK. but we have suffered 90 mile winds two days ago. Should I cut them back or what? There has been terrible damage to our trees and I want to save my beautiful cannas. Any help would be appreciated.

Carol, Yes, the winds were


Carol, Yes, the winds were terrible. I propped my leaning cannas up with some sticks and garden pails, whatever I could use and they seem to have healed/perked up and are beginning to stand on their own. Happy gardening.

Remove the faded flowers and

By Almanac Staff

Remove the faded flowers and you may get more blooms. Cut the leaves and stalks to the ground in the fall after they have turned brown.

I accidentally broke off the

By patsboys3

I accidentally broke off the new growth of my canna plant will new ones grow?

It's still early in the

By Almanac Staff

It's still early in the season and hopefully your canna plant will grow new stalks.

I live in Southern Michigan.

By mhutch

I live in Southern Michigan. I had two deck pots with cannas last summer, were beautiful. I cut the stalks down in the fall and put the planters in my basement for the winter - a comfortable 65 degrees and dry. I did not water them over the winter. I have put them out just this past week and started watering. What are the chances they will survive? I don't expect flowers this year because I am so late, but am hoping they will get some foliage and I'll do better next year.

We have had ours for at least

By Patty and John

We have had ours for at least 10 yrs now. We never take them in we just cut them back each time and now they have multiplied. Ours are yellow and gave some to our neighbor. They do great in summer cause it is hot in Covington, KY

Are your cannas in the ground

By Rovia

Are your cannas in the ground or in a pot? I have some in a pot and I am in the same zone as you.

I am from west virginia and

By charmin

I am from west virginia and this is my first year planting cannas i planted 10 and i have about 4 coming up just the leaves so far and i was wonderng why the others have'nt come up and if they will or if im being imapatient?

According to the Royal

By Almanac Staff

According to the Royal Horticultural Society: "A common problem is non-flowering. This is usually due to starting the rhizomes into growth late, but can also be caused by a lack of water or poor soil fertility."

Can cannas bulbs be planted

By Lisa Brockway

Can cannas bulbs be planted in large pots?

Yep, I planted 3 in a pot

By Dr.Mike

Yep, I planted 3 in a pot last summer because of the drought so I could control the watering. They didn't grow as tall as the ones I planted in the garden but they were still nice.

Just got our first Canna

By Anonymous

Just got our first Canna plant hoping it will fair well in the Edmonton Alberta climate submitted by Ken Dorcas

zone 7 Help!

By Anonymous

So some of my cannas starting to grow and some are not I have them spread all around my home, front yard back and sides, I did not dig them out last winter because I read in my zone if I layer well with mulch and cut the tubes they should be fine, not sure why they are not starting to grow at same time or even if they will even all come back?

Some of your cannas may be

By Almanac Staff

Some of your cannas may be getting more sun than others. Give them a little time and they should all come back.

I live in Central Indiana

By Anonymous

I live in Central Indiana (zone 5), I did not bring in my tropicanna blacks last year before winter. Will they come back?

If you didn't mulch them well

By Almanac Staff

If you didn't mulch them well they may not come back. They are cold hardy in Zones 7-11.

Canna Lily care central Wisconsin

By Anonymous

I have at least 15 bulbs that I have stored in brown paper bag. These were given to me. They came from very hard clay soil in southern Indiana. I live close to Wisconsin Dells area or an hour north of Madison. My soil is sandy. They will be planted on south side of my home. The Canna's would receive 8-10 hours of sunlight per day.I'm planting them to act as a privacy fence for our pool.

My 10 day forecast ranges from 36-70 for highs and lows from 39-57. That is for first 8 days in May. Can I plant them out side would it be safe? They will have Caster Bean plants between them.

Could I stake a clear bag for added protection and warmth. I could also, cover with straw/hay/leaves if needed. I'm worried if not planted soon we will not see them grow to full potential. I have a mix from red to variegated variety. Any suggestions and tips are greatly welcomed. Thank you for anyone who replies to my questions. :)

I am planting my cannas this

By Anonymous

I am planting my cannas this coming week in Northeastern Wisconsin. Mine have done very well for the last two years that I had them. Hummingbirds and bees like them


By Anonymous

Do deer like them ?

Planting Time Question

By Anonymous

I was told to plant cannas & flowering plants at night. Is there any benefit to this idea that you know of?

planting at night

By Anonymous

You can wear ugly clothes and not get made fun of.

wilty light green leaves

By Anonymous

I pulled my cannas out to plant them ( healthy green leaves)poking through bag. Inside most of the canna leaves were light green and wilty. Will they come back? I may have left too much soil on bulbs and there was too much moisture inside bag......?

spring cannas

By Anonymous

My cannas were already up pretty good. Last night, they got a heavy frost and are all brown. Should I mow them down for a fresh start, or leave them be? It is springtime in Texas.

Cannas are hearty, but a

By Almanac Staff

Cannas are hearty, but a frost will kill the stalks. Remove the dead stalks to the compost pile, but you can leave the rhizomes in the ground and they will shoot up again in the spring. Add a good layer of mulch to keep the roots from freezing.


By Anonymous

Over winter cannas in an old black compost bag in garage no heat frost free cut tops off remove soil, I did this and works wonderfully well my orange leaved cannas are in exellent cond always lost them befor . CHERRYHINTON CAMBRIDGE UK MIKY FLUDE,

Help with my Grandma's cannas please.

By Anonymous

I live in northern Alabama(zone 7 I think), and received many cannas after my Gramndmothers passing. I was under the impression that you couldn't really kill a canna, so I dug them up from her yard, bulbs and all, and replanted them in my yard. No problem. This was two summers ago. When fall came around I cut them off at the ground, removed many bulbs from the soil, planted Pansy's, and put down a layer of mulch. This past summer they didn't grow very tall or bloom til late in the summer. I haven't cut them off this year, only put down several inches of leaf mulch around the stalks. This is the red flower/green leaf variety and now I am afraid they won't make it thru the winter. I will be very upset if I lose them and don't know what my next move should be.

Your Grandmother's cannas

By Anonymous

Hi, I live in Coastal SC, zones 8 & 9(I'm right on the border :) I would think your cannas are hardy there where you live, but I'm wondering if they are getting plenty of sun and water. I have planted cannas in many different places in my yard and also where I used to live, and most of them thrive the best if they are in a sunny location. This year I had one placed where it got sun from dawn till dusk and it bloomed on December 15 even! :) Also maybe consider a little fertilizer, the liquid type. Maybe also have your soil tested. I don't know how old this post is, but just offering some ideas :)

canna troubles

By Almanac Staff

Cannas may be stunted or bloom poorly if they receive less than 6 hours of sunlight per day. Make sure that the soil is fertile and consistently moist. Remove spent flowers to encourage more blooms. High temperatures can also stress to the plant, often resulting in shorter growth that year; be sure to keep up with the watering at these times.

Check for signs of pests/diseases, which can affect growth and flowering. For example, canna mosaic virus (also called bean yellow mosaic virus) can cause stunted growth, late flowering, and yellow streaks on leaves.

Your county's cooperative extension can give you guidelines as to proper canna care for your area, and may be able to test for viruses (for a fee) or refer you to a lab that can. For contact information, see: and select your state.

Hope this helps!

I don't find that Cannas need

By Mad

I don't find that Cannas need a lot of sun. Those I have planted in dappled shade are doing well, while the ones on the other side of my property in the sun have bloomed less and less each year and also look very stunted. I water them frequently so I don't know why they aren't growing as well as those in shade.


By Anonymous

I have many, many what it appears to be bulbs, growing from my canna stalks and rhizomes since I have pruned the cannas for winter.They have probably been there for some time, but I did not notice until I cut the canna stalks. What are the bulbs and what do I need to do with them as they are exposed to the elements?

Those are canna seeds. They

By Almanac Staff

Those are canna seeds. They have a very hard coat and need to be soaked and nicked before sowing. You can plant the seeds in small pots indoors and then transplant outdoors when the weather warms up.

Canna Arkansas

By Anonymous

Do I need to remove my cannas after frost if I live in Northwest Arkanasas

canna hardiness

By Almanac Staff

The USDA Hardiness Zones for northwest Arkansas are 6 and 7. Most cannas are hardy to Zone 8, although a few can survive in Zone 7. It would probably be best to dig up your cannas in fall and store them over winter, especially if you are in Zone 6. (A local nursery might know what Zone you are in.) See above for more details about how to overwinter cannas.

PA - zone 5

By Anonymous

Hi - I planted 8 cannas over the summer because the tag said they were perennials. I am not sure how to get them ready for the winter, and I was hoping to keep them in the ground. How many inches should I leave on the plant for the winter, or do I absolutely have to dig them all up and store them? Thank you!!

Canna bulbs

By Anonymous

Living outside of KC, zone 5b, where the woman across the street planted maybe a dozen bulbs in the spring and then dug them up each fall. She moved 5 years ago, leaving the bulbs behind and in the ground.
They were not removed from the ground for 5 winters now and they have multiplied and continued to spread out across the south facing brick wall against which they were originally planted.
The new tenant did not want them and offered the bulbs to me. I now have 3 grocery sacks of bulbs to store this winter.
But, given what I observed, I plan to treat them as a perennial and leave them in the ground. Perhaps thinning them periodically in the fall.

After the first frosts which

By Almanac Staff

After the first frosts which kill the foliage, carefully cut off the tops and dig up the roots with a spade or fork. Brush off the soil. Let them dry in a warm place for 7 to 14 days--about 45 to 50 degrees F. Make sure it's not too cold! The corner of a basement is often good. Then, store in an open container or cardboard box amidst shredded newspaper. Or, hang in a mesh bag. The key is to allow circulating air; do not put in a closed container. You can replant each clump in the spring.


By Anonymous

How far down do I trim my cannas ( or do I ?) in the fall?
He are in a hot part of SOuthern California

Canna conundrum

By Almanac Staff

Lucky you in a frost-free zone! You can prune the old or spent foliage from your cannas any time. That allows new growth to come in. Some advise cutting the old growth (flowering stalks) when the new ones come in. While you do not have to "lift" and overwinter your bulbs, you should be prepared to lift and then them once a year or every two to three years; it depends on their vigor and the degree to which they are crowded. (You would thin them to eliminate the crowding.) Even if you thin them occasionally, you cannot hurt them. We hope this helps!

cannas seeds

By Anonymous

The seeds that come on these plants can u plant them and start new plants since there origanlly started from a bulb?

You can plant the seeds. Save

By Almanac Staff

You can plant the seeds. Save the seeds and plant them indoors 10-12 weeks before your last frost in the spring. The seeds have a hard covering that you need break before planting. Use sandpaper to sand one end of the seed until you see the white inside. Soak the seeds overnight and plant in flats or small pots. Keep in a warm spot. Transplant the seedlings to bigger pots before planting them outside when the weather has warmed up. Cannas do not come true from seed. You will have flowers but they will not look like the ones on the parent plant.

overwintering for two years

By Anonymous

I have a lot of tall, thriving cannas that I dug up and wintered last year and am about to do so for this winter as well. However, next fall, I won't be home for the entire season. Will the cannas last without being planted for two summer seasons? Would it be better to plant them and then not dig them up in the fall and have them take their chances in the hard ground for most of the winter while I'm gone? I live in the Czech Republic, so cold winters.

over overwintering cannas

By Anonymous

There is no easy answer to this. You risk losing these bulbs with either one. All of our sources suggest, strongly, that cannas will not survive a harsh winter in the ground. It seems like you know that. Our advice is not to leave them in the ground for the period you describe. If the cold doesn't get them, the wet (melt and potential refreeze of a normal winter, and rain) might. However, if you try this, mulch heavily. Will they survive two summers, effectively in storage (not in the ground)? That is a question that is seldom asked, so our best response is "not likely." The bulbs store the food for the next season. If the bulbs sit on a shelf or in peat or whatever, they will dry out, and the food would be used up, or wasted, over the course of time that you describe. Do you have a friend who could store them, plant them (and enjoy them), and then store them (and plant, if nec.) again?? We hope this helps.

Canna question

By Anonymous

I received a canna plant from my daughter in early September. I live in NE Wisconsin and not sure if I can plant in a pot and keep in house over the winter or if I should put in my basement and keep watered so it can "sleep". When I plant next year should I dig up in the fall and bring indoors?

After the first frost dig up

By Almanac Staff

After the first frost dig up the canna bulbs and cut off the foliage to about 2-3 inches from the bulb. Place the bulbs in a dry area to "cure" for a couple of days. Then wrap the bulbs in newspaper and store in a cool, dry place for the winter. Do not water. In the spring plant outside and then dig up in the fall.


By Anonymous

I have 6 5-6ft Canna Lilies. The red/green leave ones. Redy/orange flowers. I got the roots from a friend who always bloomed and grew huge. Mine look wonderful, but it almost October and no flowers on any of them. They were planted in organic compost with bone meal. they have full sun for 6-8hrs. no bugs/pest. even a few new shoots have come up in the last week and already have 1-2 leaves on them. in 20 gal pots. I live in Vancouver bc. thanks

Flower Troubles

By Almanac Staff

It sounds like your cannas have plenty of sun and rich soil. If this is the first year in which they were transplanted, then they might be waiting to bloom in the following year. Sometimes it takes a year for transplanted cannas to get comfy in their new home before they concentrate their energy on flowering, especially any divisions with just 1 eye. Other causes might be: rhizomes are planted too deep (no more than 3 or 4 inches deep) or the rhizomes are overcrowded (space them 1 to 4 feet apart).

zone and thinning vs. removal

By Anonymous

i live in southern california and didn't know what they were when my husband planted them but our yellow cannas have been in the ground now for about 2 1/2 years and have really grown and bloomed this year. they are in a smaller planter area so in our climate do i remove them for the winter (doesn't get that cold here) and if not I still need to thin them out because the small size of the area. please advise and thank you so much

Colorful cannas are a

By Almanac Staff

Colorful cannas are a stunning addition to any landscape! I envy you. I canna think of a reason to “lift” (remove from the soil before winter) your cannas now, if they have been in the ground for 2 ½ years and are growing and blooming successfully. If you want to thin them, of course, you need to lift them—at least for the time it takes to divide, or thin, them. As noted above, dividing is best done in spring. Unearth the tubers and, using a sharp, cut the tubers apart, making sure that each piece contains one “eye” on a substantial piece of rootstock. Replant the tubers as you like; give the others to friends as gifts!


By Anonymous

can someone tell me about the seeds that develop by the flowers, what are they for????

Dying leaves

By Anonymous

Leaves are turning black, curling, dying. Even the new flowers have black on the blooms. Advice please!

Sometimes black leaves are

By Almanac Staff

Sometimes black leaves are due to overfertilization or too much salt content in the water. Let the soil completely dry out and then water with distilled water. If the leaves do not recover, it may be a pest or disease issue. Bring a sample to your local cooperative extension or garden center for a complete diagnosis.

Cannas in water

By Anonymous

I was at a nursery looking for water lillies and papyrus when I noticed they had Cannas potted in water. Will Cannas do well in water?

Yes, the aquatic canna can be

By Almanac Staff

Yes, the aquatic canna can be grow in water as long as the crown is near the water's surface--within 3 inches of the top of the pot.

Canna color changes

By Anonymous

Why do cannas sometimes change color? For the past several years my plants only produced red flowers- this year some have yellow flowers.

Some varieties change colors

By Almanac Staff

Some varieties change colors through the seasons. For example, Canna Beatrix starts out apricot and changes to pink.

Florida Orange Cannas problems

By Anonymous

Beautiful flowers... we have green worms eating the leaves & rust on the bottom leaves...any advice?

Cannas rarely have problems

By Almanac Staff

Cannas rarely have problems but if you have a green caterpillar infestation, you'll need to apply an appropriate insecticide. We suggest calling your local Florida cooperative extension or garden center for local insecticide advice.

Need a boost

By Anonymous

I have several areas in my yard of cannas ( Columbia SC). The ones near the house covered in red rock as their mulch, get run off from the roof, and only get 4 hours of morning sun are the best. I never dig them up for the winter. The area around the pool get 6 to 8 hours and they look horrible this year. Usually they grow 5 to 6 feet high like the others, but it is mid July and they are less than knee high. They have mulch at the base I've had them all about 6 years. I make sure they have enough water, but they just aren't growing. Any ideas on what kind of fertilizer I can use?

Since you've grown cannas,

By Almanac Staff

Since you've grown cannas, we'll assume you have enough sun (at least 4 hours) and water.
If they're not growing, here are a couple thoughts 1) Are they getting overcrowded? Separate and divide them. 2) Try pruning after bloom to encourage flower production by cutting the stem beneath the wilted flower. After all flower stems have flowered, prune them all off to avoid seed production which robs the nutrients. 3) Though cannas aren't that picky about soil, they perform better with compost and aged manure. You can also boost the canna with fertilizer monthly--an all-purpose kind will do.


By Anonymous

Can they be planted in Michigan..zone5?

Yes and no. If you grow

By Almanac Staff

Yes and no. If you grow cannas in a colder zone than Zone 9 (or Zone 7 for hearty types), you'll need to dig them up and store for the next season or overwinter indoors.

Cannas thrive in MI

By Anonymous

When I moved in to my duplex my neighbor and I had them cover our whole front of our houses. They grow to be six feet! I couldn't handle them covering my front window any longer. At night they looked as if someone was outside peeking in. Especially on a windy night. It has taken me two years of digging to get even a few of the plants to stop growing. I at least uncovered my outdoor faucet and hanging hose from them however they still cover my window. They give me privacy from neighbor kids. ; ) I'm used to them now and they are pretty and I do not even have to maintain them other than under extremely hot conditions and dry spells I water them daily. It helps that they are close to the house and are next to my hose. They are mulched every year and I cut them at the end of fall. Many neighbors have taken bulbs home and have grown their own. So yes they do thrive and are wonderful because they are low maintenance. Good luck flowering!

Tropicanna - Rhizones

By Anonymous

Last year I planted these in a pot outside - after the plant died off, I also removed some of the rhizones thinking that they would not come back the next year, and moved the pot into the garage for the winter. To my pleasant surprise early this Sprint there were approximately 12 stalks growing in the pot. I moved them to my deck and I'm enjoying beautiful flowers all over again. I wish I knew this before I removed the rhyzones - could have a lot more.

does anybody know where you

By Anonymous

does anybody know where you can order other colors of cannas.other then red?

By Lynda E Postal

Yes, cannas are often in

By Almanac Staff

Yes, cannas are often in vivid red, but also come in pale yellow, orange, salmon, apricot, pink, and even pastel colors. They can also come with stripes, streaks, spots and contrasting colors such as a yellow or orange flower with darker red on it.


By Anonymous

I have little bulbs that are coming up after the Flower dies and falls off. Can anyone tell me what they are?

Dead-heading Cannas

By Anonymous

I've researched several websites on how to dead-head the flowers on Cannas. Some say to cut the entire stalk off to the base; some say cut off the stem just below the flower; some say don't prune ~~ Wow! Does anyone know whichis the way to dead-head?

We advise to cut the entire

By Almanac Staff

We advise to cut the entire stalk on which the blooms have faded. Then you'll get new stalks with blooms.

Try the Tropicanna. They are

By Anonymous

Try the Tropicanna. They are orange with yellow and quite lovely!!

i just love cannas and

By missterri_lynne

I just love cannas and elephant ears. I'd like to come across some other color than just red. But they're still pretty.

I have 9ft tall orange cannas

By Mireya

I have 9ft tall orange cannas at my home in San Antonio, Texas.

Where to buy cannas

By Anonymous

I just purchased several different colors of cannas, elephant ears, and banana trees from, received them in the mail yesterday and they all looked good.

Yellow cannas

By Anonymous

My daughter bought her yellow cannas at Lowe's.

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