Garden

Flowering Canna - Canna indica

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La Canna indicates

The cane genus has about a dozen species, all originating from the American continent, and in particular from South America; in the places of origin the reeds have been cultivated for millennia, both as ornamental plants and as real vegetables, as the stocky fleshy rhizome is edible, and is used to obtain starch. The success of these plants in Europe occurred centuries ago, since then some species, in particular Canna indica, have naturalized in large parts of the globe, and also in the Mediterranean area; moreover, over the decades, gardeners from most of the world have hybridized cane species, obtaining practically hundreds of cultivars and hybrids.

The reeds and the indica reed are perennial rhizomatous herbaceous plants; each rhizome, large in size, produces numerous stems, on which large sharp leaves develop; the leaf page develops completely wrapped around the stem, and unfolds from it as the leaf grows. The foliage is rigid and leathery, dark green, glaucous, brownish or even mottled; during the summer months, racemes develop at the apex of the stems, consisting of large tubular flowers, yellow, red, orange, striped, striped.

The flowers bloom in succession starting from the base of the inflorescence; in some varieties the racemes are branched, at the end of the flowering of an inflorescence, the lateral inflorescence begins to develop, thus continuing to bloom for months, until the end of summer.

The reeds are generally large plants, the stems can easily reach 200-250 cm in height, even if in the gardens they prefer more contained varieties, which do not exceed 150-170 cm in height. There are also dwarf rods, which do not exceed 90-100 cm in height.


Climate needs

The plants of cane indicates they love sunny and bright positions; in Italy, in any case, locations where they can enjoy shade in the hottest hours of the day are preferred, this is because in the areas of origin these plants are used to high environmental humidity, which is difficult to maintain in Italian gardens under the August sun.

So let's place them in a sunny place, but where they can enjoy the refreshment of the shade in the lower part of the stem and on the ground, so that we can always leave the rhizome in a hot and humid climate.

These plants do not fear frost, even a short freeze of moderate size can completely ruin the rhizomes, especially at the beginning and end of winter, when the plants have enjoyed a few mild days and are not in complete vegetative rest.

For this reason, the cane rhizomes must be cultivated in pots, or completely eradicated from the ground in autumn, and then re-positioned in April-May, when the climate is already spring.

Generally the grubbing up operation is carried out in the autumn, in October-November, after pruning the plant a few centimeters from the ground and suspending the watering.

The rhizomes must be eradicated avoiding to ruin or break them, leaving around them a little of the soil that contained them, especially if it is still wet. While they are still damp, put them in a cardboard box, or in a jute bag, full of peat or sand and then cover them completely; containers with reeds must be kept in a cool, dark place, with temperatures between 5 and 10 ° C.

If we fear that they may be prey to fungi or mold, before storing them, dust them with fungicide.

If our canes are grown in pots, in autumn we can potulate them at about 10-15 cm from the ground, we stop watering them and we put the pots in a sheltered place, where they are not subject to frost, but not at home, because these bulbous plants need to a period of vegetative rest, with temperatures below 10 ° C.

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