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Canna planting time

Posted by eric_oh 6a (My Page) on
Sat, May 6, 06 at 22:49

A recent article in our local paper suggested that the proper way to handle cannas (in central Ohio, anyway) is to start tubers early in pots, and only move them into the ground after the risk of frost is past.

I don't have the time or coldframe/windowsill/light garden room to do this, so I've been planting dormant or sprouting tubers in their permanent locations on average around April 25. If there's a couple of frosts after that, well cannas are reliably hardy well up into zone 7 and they can take a bit of frost (the article made it sound like premature planting would surely cause their death from cool wet conditions).
Earlier this evening I was throwing some straw over the sprouting cannas in case we get a touch of light frost overnight, when I noticed that adjacent to my carefully planted canna patches, half a dozen more sprouts were emerging from an area where I had cannas ('Wyoming') last year. They've overwintered, unmulched (after a season low of 1F). Maybe cannas are a little tougher than we give them credit for.

How are the rest of you handling spring planting in allegedly non-hardy climates?

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RE: Canna planting time

  • Posted by whip1 z5 ne Ohio (My Page) on
    Sun, May 7, 06 at 21:26

I'm in zone 5, ne Ohio. I left about 8 plants in the ground, and three lived! This is the exception. They were up close to the house, and we had a mild winter. We had a frost about two weeks ago. The foilage died back, and a week later they were growing. I know zones 7 and 8 get frost, and the plants are fine. They can cleary handle some pretty hard freezing also. I plant my canna directly in the gound in the middle of May. I believe may 15th is the last day for frost in my zone. If you're in zone 6, you can plant them now.

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