Trimming back canna's

h_zanola1February 12, 2013

I know I'm so late, but I need to trim back my canna's and we are pretty much done with the freezing temperatures. More rain in the next few months-some cold temps though (40's-50's).

Do I cut them back to the ground and slim them out?

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In your area, you can cut the stalks to roughly 3 - 4 inches above the ground and you may likely need to thin (divide) the plants.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2013 at 4:38PM
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Thank you. I cut them roughly 1 to 2" above ground. Are they going to be ok?

    Bookmark   February 13, 2013 at 7:57PM
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Cutting back closer to the ground will not be a problem. We often recommend 3 -4 inches simply to allow enough remaining stalk attached as a more suitable hand hold if one wants to dig and divide part or all the clump.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2013 at 5:53PM
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Thank you. I trimmed them 1" to 2" above ground, divided them up, and sprinkled some new potting soil on top of them. New seeds are sprouting all over. There were areas where they were bunched together, and empty areas; so I evenly spread them into the soil. New pictures in a month or so...:)

    Bookmark   February 27, 2013 at 4:22PM
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I am worried; at what month/date/time of his early year will these canna's begin sprouting? I think their in shock. The weather in Shasta Lake has been high 70's/low 80's and this forecast just began this week. HELP!

    Bookmark   March 12, 2013 at 12:30PM
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Assuming your rhizomes were sound when you replanted they should be fine. Planting depth and night temperatures will be a factor. You can always carefully dig up a few of the rhizomes to make sure they are not rotted. They typically will begin to develop a few new white roots and you may see white bud swelling on the growing points. I am guessing you replanted a little over two weeks ago so you will begin to see growth at any time if the night temps stay warm. How deep are the rhizomes planted? Two inches of soil over the top is plenty.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2013 at 11:30PM
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Thank you Kent. I'm assuming the rhizomes were sound when I trimmed and spread them out (see picture above). At what month should I see new white roots and white budding swelling on the growing points? As of today, they look just like the picture above. The rhizomes are one to two inches below soil. It has been one month since the trimming. Is this normal? The shoots still look dead to me; hadn't I known there were bulbs, I would dig them up.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2013 at 6:13PM
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Unfortunately I think I have misunderstood what you may have done in regard to lifting, dividing and replanting your cannas. Your photo shows some of the old canna stalks sticking out of the ground. I assumed that there was (is) also a good portion of the underground rhizome attached to the old stalk. All of the new growth will originate underground on the rhizome and NOT on the stalk sticking out of the soil. Did you actually dig the underground rhizomes and divide and replant them? All above ground foliage including the stalks and leaves should have been discarded and only the underground portion replanted along with the short attached stalk.
The attached photo shows a dug canna plant with foliage, stalks and the underground rhizomes. The only portion replanted would be the rhizome after dividing and the rest is removed and trashed. If you have handled your plants in this manner, they will be just fine.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2013 at 7:49PM
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Hi Kent, I believe I did exactly as you say...When I began trimming them, I noticed that some of the rhizomes were very clumped together; so I split them up and transplanted them in empty areas; then, I finished trimming back the dead stalks one to two inches from the ground. Right now, all you see from ground level is the one to two inch stalks sticking out of the ground. An inch or so below the soil are the rhizomes which are very healthy looking. So, I should be ok, just impatient with the new growth...

    Bookmark   March 14, 2013 at 5:19PM
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Look! I have so much new growth, and am so excited! Thank you Kent and everyone for your help.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2013 at 1:38PM
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