genus of robust, rhizomatous perennials consists of about 25
species, all native to tropical and South America.
Belonging to the same broad grouping as gingers and bananas, they
resemble these in that their apparent aboveground stems are not true
stems but collections of tightly furled leaf bases, rising from the
thick knotty rhizomes.
Slender flowering stems grow up through the centers of these false
stems, emerging at the top with showy flowers of very asymmetrical
structure. All garden cannas are hybrids with much broader petals,
originating as crosses between several species in the mid-nineteenth
Early hybrids had fairly smooth petals in single colors but the
addition of Canna flaccida genes resulted in larger, crumpled
flowers with striking variegations (orchid-flowered cannas).
The colors of cannas range from reds, oranges and yellows through to
apricots, creams and pinks.
The leaves can be green, bronze or purple, or sometimes white or
Plants range in height from 18 in (45 cm) to 8 ft (2.4 m).
Cultivation: They are sun-loving plants and thrive in hot dry
weather as long as watercan be kept up to the roots, and they
respond well to heavy feeding.
Cut back to the ground after flowers finish.
Propagate by division.