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Tropicanna

This fabulous canna is well known for its dramatic, multi-hued tropical foliage. Whether Canna Tropicanna® is growing in a pot or in the garden, it thrives in warm conditions sending up tall spears which unfurl into exotic foliage covered in stripes of burgundy red, pink, yellow, gold, and deep green. Each leaf is different - the effect is astonishing especially when backlit by the sun. And to top it all off, the flowers are a brilliant tangerine orange. 

There is no canna like Tropicanna® canna.

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 Key Features

  • Brings a tropical touch to the garden
  • Exotic display of large striped red, pink, yellow and deep green leaves
  • Brilliant tangerine orange flowers
  • Can be planted in full sun or part shade
  • Ideal for gardens, landscapes and water gardens
  • Suitable in USDA zones 3-11 (care instructions are detailed under 'Hardiness', below)

Suggested Uses

Commercial landscapes in USDA zones 7 through 11 (no lifting required). It is ideal for planting in garden beds and borders and container plantings. Great for water gardens, ponds and bogs.  They thrive near water and in wet boggy areas where often other plants find it difficult to grow.    Wherever planted,  they are spectacular,  especially if you can use the sun as a backdrop.    The leaves lit from behind take on an almost irridescent color.

Growth Habit

Dense clump-forming plant with horizontal rhizomes. Upright growth habit.

Plant Size

In garden beds: grows to 4 feet tall in the first year, grows up to 6 feet tall in subsequent years in zones 7 and above if undisturbed (not lifted),after growing season. In containers: will grow 4 feet tall or more, can be cut back any time to force new growth. Plant in a large pot, 18-24inches diameter or larger.

Mature Height

4 - 6 ft.

Spacing

Plant 18-inches apart in garden beds. Can be planted closer together in containers. Containers should be a minimum of 18-24inches diameter to promote optimal plant growth/size.

Hardiness

Cannas are tropical plants and are sensitive to extended exposure to frost. Mild winters (USDA zones 7 through 11): As soon as the leaves begin to die back, cut off foliage to soil level, and leave in-ground or in pots over the winter. In Spring, growth will start up as warmer temperatures arrive.

Areas with severe winters (USDA zones 3 through 6): As soon as the leaves begin to die back, cut off foliage to about 4 inches, dig up the rhizomes, let them dry for a few days in a protected area. Store the rhizomes in a cool dry place for the winter surrounded with wood chips if possible. Divide the rhizome shoots and replant in spring. Start indoors to get an early jump on the season, but do not put outside until all danger of frost is past. They require a soil temperature minimum of 60 deg to begin to grow in early spring, but grow best once temperatures reach 75+ F.

Flowering Period

Brilliant tangerine orange flowers are produced from summer and then typically 2 to 3 months. Many flowers are produced during the season.

Fragrance

Not fragrant.

Foliage

Variegated leaves, each slightly different, yielding a multihued display that changes from burgundy to red to pink, yellow, gold and deep green with varying shades and intensities of coloration. When backlit by the sun, the leaves seem to shimmer with an iridescent glow. Makes brilliant cut foliage.

Pruning/Pinching

Not necessary. Spent flower blooms drop naturally. Dig and divide to maintain size and shape.

Temperature

Canna Tropicanna® is a tropical plant and should be protected from frost. Plants will over winter in the ground and withstand light frosts; however, potted plants will need to be protected or over wintered in a greenhouse. Canna Tropicanna® will start to grow when soil temperatures exceed 50ºF in Spring, but leaves won't attain full color until temperatures regularly exceed 60+ ºF.

Light Needs

Outdoors: Performs best in full sun (six hours of sun daily), but will tolerate partial shade (minimum four hours of sun daily). Indoors: best performance is achieved in a well-lit site with a minimum of 4 hours sun daily and a minimum night temperature of 58ºF with a summer vacation out of doors in a sunny or partially sunny spot.

Soil Needs

Canna Tropicanna® will tolerate a range of soils but will perform best in a deep fertile soil. It will tolerate poorly drained areas.

Water Needs

With masses of broad fleshy leaves, Canna Tropicanna® enjoys frequent watering to perform at its best.

Fertilizer

In Spring, use a handful per plant of slow-release fertilizer

Disease Tolerance

Cannas are not prone to disease in the landscape.

Pest Issues

No major pests. Caterpillars can damage leaves.

Special Care

Avoid windy locations as the large soft leaves can be damaged. Outdoors: Easy care plant. Better performance will be attained if plants are watered and fed regularly, but once established, Canna Tropicanna® flowers readily with minimal care. In Containers: If a potted plant should dry out excessively, leaves may fade to green and yellow, losing the array of mixed colorations. If this should happen, cut back lackluster leaves or even the entire stem to the soil line. Water regularly. Plant will respond by sending up new shoots.

Parentage

Sport of Canna indica var. 'Wyoming'. This spontaneous natural hybrid was discovered in South Africa.

 

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