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my cannas, 97% are dead

Posted by v1rtu0s1ty Zone 5a, Northern IL (My Page) on
Fri, May 1, 09 at 12:20

I bought canna phasion at Lowes last year, some on ebay, etc. They were very healthy went I brought them home. I pulled and kept them everything in the basement. I placed them all in a plastic bag filled with peat moss. Then placed the plastic bags inside the cooler. I looked at them today, they're all black. :(

Hmmm, maybe, my basement is too cold for them.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: my cannas, 97% are dead

Cooler?

If the temperature was around 40 deg. F., that should have worked. I wrap my rhizomes in newspaper, put in garbage bags closed with twist ties, and put in a cold basement closet. I have been doing that for decades without losing a single Tropicanna. However, I have lost some Pink Sunbursts that way. It is better to use dry sphagnum moss for more delicate cannas such as Pink Sunburst.


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RE: my cannas, 97% are dead

I'll know what to do next time. Last week, I went to a plant swap. Someone brought canna rhizomes. I took some rhizomes. What I noticed was that the canna rhizomes were covered with dried dirt. So looks like the dirt wasn't removed at all. Someone already mentioned that here too.

I think, my failure could have caused by washing the entire rhizomes with water and not waiting for them to be knocked off by hard frost.

I'm so glad that the 3% I planted on May 2 are now showing shoots. I'm hoping that the shoots I saw are Canna Australia and Canna Phaison.

Yeah, I am also going to use peat moss this time. Mine were just inside a plastic bag.


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RE: my cannas, 97% are dead

"Yeah, I am also going to use peat moss this time. Mine were just inside a plastic bag."

But, you previously said,

"I placed them all in a plastic bag filled with peat moss."

My rhizomes are cleaned with a narrow jet of water from my garden hose. Removing sticky clay loam from the roots that way is time consuming. I do not cut off the roots.


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RE: my cannas, 97% are dead

When I did the peat moss stuff, it was already February. I kept them month of October using plain plastic or box. When I visited the rhizomes around February, I was shocked when I saw how they look like. So, I had to find a different approach.

This time, I really won't clean the rhizomes and neither am I going to remove the roots. I will leave remaining soil.

Anyways, here is an update. I saw my Canna Australia today! It's about 2" high. I really love its very deep shiny maroon leaves. The canna mystique is now 3" or 4" tall. I'm glad it made it too. The bengal tiger I bought from ebay did not make it. I really don't feel bad for this one because I felt I got ripped off. When I got it last year, it was totally sick as shown by the leaves. Seller said it's stress due to shipping. LOL. Anyways, the bengal I bought from a local nursery is doing great progress.


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RE: my cannas, 97% are dead

I only lost a few rhizomes this year and all I did was I cut the stalks down around halloween and then the first week of Nov. They are dug up. And I rinse them off with the hose well actually hose them off to get all of the dirt off. I trim any lose bits and extras. And then I lay them flat to air dry for at least 24 hours. And then I can store them in a plastic crate and I just use newspaper to seperate the different colors. I also stored a few in plastic grocery bags.. And they made it ok. They were stored in my basement which is somewhat heated but cooler than the rest of the house. And I check on them once or twice during the winter if I remember. Works for me.


Paula


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RE: my cannas, 97% are dead

I want to reiterate that, in my experience, the best packing medium is dried sphagnum moss. This is NOT the same as peatmoss because sphagnum moss is alive when harvested and peatmoss is long dead when it is harvested. Sphagnum moss contains natural fungicides and bactericides. If you have a special canna that you don't want to risk losing, pack it dried sphagnum moss.


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RE: my cannas, 97% are dead

Hi struwwelpeter,

I didn't know that the two are different. Where can I buy dried sphagnum moss?

Thanks!


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RE: my cannas, 97% are dead

If you Google "sphagnum moss", a lot of advertisements appear. Sometimes Home Depot has small bags near the houseplants.


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RE: my cannas, 97% are dead

Lowes usually has it in the section with perlite and other miracle grow mediums and fertilizers. It could be labeled as Orchid Moss.


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RE: my cannas, 97% are dead

You should be able to find it at Michael's or craft stores too probably more expensive though. Sometime's labeled as "green moss"


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RE: my cannas, 97% are dead

I have never lost a canna but I grow all mine in pots.

If the pot is not big I just bring the pot inside the garage that does not go below 40. If it is a big pot I pull them out of the pot and put them in the plastic grocery bag left open. I try not to disturb the plant by removing the soil or breaking them.

The leaves start to grow out of the pot or bag in March.

Before I put them out to grow I divide or trade if anyone has asked for any that I grow at that time.


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