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Canna - What to do over winter?

(7 Posts)
blackpoppy Wed 18-Sep-13 09:11:48

Hello gardening people,

I was given a beautiful purple canna over the summer which is currently living in a pot on the patio. The spot gets very cold in winter and I don't want to kill it! What do other people do with theirs? Would it be a good idea to bring it inside or would this be to warm for it? Do they just die back then reappear in the spring?

Many thanks in advance for any gardening wisdom smile

echt Wed 18-Sep-13 09:44:47

In the UK I cut them back then wrapped the pot to shelter it but left it outside in a sheltered spot. This when I'd divide to make more plants.

If you divide in spring, it's easy to cut off potentially flowering shoots.

Talkinpeace Wed 18-Sep-13 15:45:20

I let mine die back with the first frost, then put them frost free to dry out for a month and cut all the foliage down.
In early April I repot - with lots of swellgel and fertiliser in the pots.
They do not form the flowering spikes till late May.
I've had Cannas and Hedychiums for 25 years (I got into them before Christopher Lloyd!!)

funnyperson Wed 18-Sep-13 20:55:01

talkin peace what do you mean by 'put them frost free to dry out'?

Talkinpeace Wed 18-Sep-13 21:00:01


I keep my cannas (and hedychiums) in BIG pots in stewart black trays all summer - as they are very greedy feeders.
As soon as the weather turns cold, I take them out of the trays to start to drain and then once the first frost has whacked the stems, cut back the rotten stuff and put them in my polytunnel to dry out
they need to overwinter dry and frost free (a bit like dahlias) - minimum 3 degrees, max 10 degrees
but as mine are huge (in 24 inch pots) I leave them in the dry compost over winter, either in the polytunnel or under the greenhouse staging
and then kick them back into life around the Spring Equinox

funnyperson Wed 18-Sep-13 21:35:11

Thank you.
A lot of techy stuff such as polytunnels, greenhouse staging, and stewart trays appears to be needed. Are these things vital?Sorry to ask for detail but this will be the first year I have canna and dahlias to overwinter.

Talkinpeace Wed 18-Sep-13 21:58:01

I'm spoilt, I have a huge garden.
At my old house, with a 15 foot garden
they lived in pots and trays (cheap from any garden centre)
then in the winter, once the frost had cut them back
the pots went onto pallets up against the back of the house with layers of bubble wrap over them.
then pot up in the spring

thing is they are greedy - let them feed and they reward you

hedychiums are easier - as hardier - and they smell good.

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