This blog is about growing tropical-looking plants in the Phoenix, Arizona area

June 28, 2014

The trick to having beautiful cannas

Cannas can be beautiful, but they can also be ugly, as they tend to get very ratty quickly. There is just no better way to describe neglected cannas than *ratty*. Torn edges, etc. Here in Phoenix, the leaves sunburn. But there is a way to keep your cannas beautiful, and all it takes is a little careful pruning.

What I am looking for from the cannas is the beautiful tropical foliage. And that is only on the new growth. Luckily, cannas grow like crazy. Once a stalk has gotten old, maybe flowered, it starts looking ratty and it needs to be removed to make way for the new growth. But here is where you have to be careful!

The new growth shows as the bright red sprouts. The trick is to trim around them, but leave them alone. They will become the beautiful leaves that you want to see. And yes, you have to do this all of the time. This is a *fussy garden* thing, not a *monthly landscapers* thing. And you need access so these plants can't be in some distant part of the garden, they need to be where you can grab the clippers and do a quick trim whenever you need to.

Oh yeah, don't forget to give them plenty of water (you can't overwater cannas) and fertilizer!
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