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Herbaceous Perennial

Canna brasiliensis

Brazilian canna

Clump-forming perennial with broadly lance-shaped, dark green leaves often tinged with bronze. Clusters of bright red and yellow, or orange, iris-like flowers, 5-8cm across, are produced on upright stems up to 1.8m tall from mid-summer to autumn

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Size
Ultimate height
1.5–2.5 metres
Time to ultimate height
2–5 years
Ultimate spread
0.1–0.5 metres
Growing conditions
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Moist but well–drained, Poorly–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Green Bronze
Summer Red Yellow Orange Green Bronze
Autumn Red Yellow Orange Green Bronze
Winter
Position
  • Full sun
Aspect

South–facing or West–facing

Exposure
Sheltered
Hardiness
H3
Botanical details
Family
Cannaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Deciduous
Habit
Clump forming, Columnar upright
Genus

Canna are rhizomatous herbaceous perennials with erect stems bearing ovate leaves, with showy flowers with showy petal-like staminodes and small, coloured petals and sepals, borne in racemes or panicles in summer and autumn

Name status

Correct

Plant range
Tropical Americas

How to grow

Cultivation

Grow in a sheltered site in fertile soil in full sun, planting in early summer once frosts have passed. Water freely in dry weather and apply a high-potassium fertiliser monthly. Lift the rhizomes in autumn when frost blackens the foliage. Store over winter in barely moist, peat-free potting mix or leaf mould in frost-free conditions. In mild areas leave in the ground but cover with a dry mulch. See canna cultivation

Propagation

Propagate by seed (sown indoors), or propagate by division in early spring

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • City and courtyard gardens
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Mediterranean climate plants
  • Sub-tropical
  • Patio and container plants
  • Bedding
  • Conservatory and greenhouse
  • Flower borders and beds
  • Wall side borders
Pruning

Remove dead flowers individually to promote continued flowering. Leave to die back in autumn

Pests

May be susceptible to glasshouse red spider mite, slugs and caterpillars

Diseases

May be susceptible to canna viruses

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