A few weeks ago, my husband and I were on a mission to add some “screening” to the front porch. We thought either tall planters or a low hanging basket….we decided on a little bit of both!
While at a local nursery, we were looking for something that took part sun. While the front porch is a bright location, direct sun doesn’t reach it until the afternoon and through the setting hours. We spotted a beautiful purple leafed plant that was full and upright, exactly what we had in mind. It was the South Pacific Scarlet Canna Lily. Some were already in bloom with deep red-orange blooms. We picked two that were not in bloom, with a straight up stalk (some were leaning), and with healthy leaves.
Since we weren’t really sure what we were looking for, I was doing my research there 😉 Mostly, I was interested in the container size since we were setting them along the front entry. I found an online post that recommended a 15″ to 18″ diameter pot. We went with the 15″ plastic container with a neutral “glazed” design. I also learned that Canna Lilies grow from horizontal rhizomes that can be divided in Spring (zones 7+) or divided in Winter when dormant and are dug out to store. The rhizome also sends out new shoots, spreading as wide as 2′ to 3′. The main stalk can grow tall, up to 7′. In the containers, I don’t imagine they would grown that tall. As the shoot grows tall into a stalk it grows large leaves that spiral out into shape, quite a sight to see! After about 6-9 leaves a thin stalk emerges from the middle with an inflorescence at the tip. What’s an inflorescence? … My thought exactly. An inflorescence is a cluster of flowers arranged on a stem that is composed of a main branch. After the inflorescence has finished blooming, the stalk will begin to die. But no worries here, as those new shoots that grow so quickly are not far behind to shine in the spotlight.
We mulched the containers well to retain moisture and since the spot has some shade, I find myself watering every couple of days. We also had an empty hanging basket in the closet, so we found a nice Variegated Vinca that will spill over the sides of the hanging basket and bloom small blue flowers. We have it hanging right in between the two Canna Lilies.
You can see the growth from the first picture to the last picture. In two weeks the leaves grew tall and wide. Read more about Growing Canna Lilies in your Garden!