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Home > Products > Bulbs > Canna Cultiviars

  Canna Cultiviars
 
Canna field
Canna field at San Marcos Growers
 

Important Note: Canna collections worldwide have experienced problems with virus infected plants. In Britain Ian Cooke destroyed his National Collection because much of it was infected with a virus. In the United States the Canna Yellow Mottle Virus has sweep rapidly through collections and nurseries across the county. In an effort to curb further spread of this virus, the California Department of Agriculture has ordered the destruction of any infected variety. Inspectors from the Agricultural Commissioner's office for each county has been inspecting and sending in for analysis every variety of Canna from California nurseries. We have had our inspection in May 2005 and then destroyed all known virus infected plants; the canna we continue to list appear to be virus free or do not show a susceptibility to the virus. We continue to monitor these plants to insure this.

Of the many plants that remind us of gardens of the past, perhaps none are as dramatic and colorful as canna lilies. The large flowers are brightly colored and complex in design and the attractive bold foliage can be green, bronze, red or striped. That these plants remind us so much of grandma's garden or that old abandoned house on the edge of town attests not only to their durability but also to their desirability in a more Victorian and flowery garden period. Over the years these plants have faded in popularity, possibly due to their large stature and deciduous nature, but never have they completely disappeared from the California Garden. In the middle of summer one begins to notice the large flowering plants in the older sections of town, in the parks and sometimes at the back of a perennial border. Recently there has been renewal of interest in this exotic group of plants, especially with new hybrids that have only become available in the last couple years. San Marcos Growers is excited about the new cannas and has expanded its list to include the rainbow of colors described below.

Most of the hybrids are from a very complex breeding line that involves several species in the genus Canna and are collectively called Canna x generalis. In addition to this hybrid group there are hybrids especially bred for aquatic gardens. The four aquatic cannas that we offer, 'Endeavor', 'Erebus', 'Ra', 'Taney', were the result of hybridization work done by Robert Armstrong at Longwood Gardens and represent crosses of Canna glauca with C. x generalis hybrids. All are suitable in normal garden situations, in pots or in pond or bog plantings.

Plant cannas in full sun in a rich amended soil. Give ample water and apply a generous amount of fertilizer in late spring. Although durable these plants will look far better if deadheaded and snails and slugs are controlled. Cannas are surprisingly hardy, tolerating temperatures to around 0 F if mulched around the crown.

What's In A Name?
Canna Lily is the common name attached to a large group of hybrid plants in the genus Canna, in the family Cannaceae. Canna is a Latin word meaning a type of reed. The hybrids are from a very complex breeding line that involves several species in the genus Canna and are collectively called Canna x generalis.

Canna Links

Canna indica: Indian Shot

Horn Canna Farm

Karchesky Canna Collection

The National (UK) Canna Collection

Marek Busiakiewicz's World Wide Gallery of Cannas

Canna Hybrids

'Black Knight' - A bold plant, growing to 4-6 ft. tall with striking dark maroon foliage and rich red flowers.

'Bangkok Yellow'- AKA 'Nirvana', 'King of Siam' - A plant so spectacular it deserves so many names. Growing to 4-6 ft. tall with striking yellow and green variegated foliage and large bright yellow flowers. We no longer grow this variety as it was determined to have Canna Yellow Mottle Virus in May 2005.

'Carousel' - A canna from Herb Kelly. Carousel grows to 3-5 feet tall and has multiple colors in each individual flower, first opening a soft pastel orange with occasional yellow streaks, turning pink with white streaks as the flower ages. A flower stalk will have the entire range of colors as the newer flowers emerge within the older flowers. - We are no longer growing this cultivar.

'Cleopatra' - Like its namesake this canna has been known to do an about face; usually it is a green leafed plant having large yellow flowers with red spots it often throws out a pure or part red flower as well as a leaf with broad maroon stripes. A very beautiful old cultivar. We no longer grow this variety as it was determined to have Canna Yellow Mottle Virus in May 2005.

'Durban' - An outrageously colorful plant to 4-7 ft. tall. The new foliage emerges with dark red stripes highlighted with pink, bronze, and pale yellow striping and ages to a bronze-green with yellow stripes. The large orange-red flowers are an added bonus. This plant is a show stopper. We no longer grow this variety as it was determined to have Canna Yellow Mottle Virus in May 2005.

'Ehemanni'- An exotic looking plant to 6-8 ft. tall with large pendulous red-rose colored flowers and large green leaves - This plant is often sold as a Canna iridiflora from which it most probably originated. An old hybrid dating back to 1863. (Annee)

'Eileen Gallo' - A combination of pale pink and yellow (appearing to be apricot from a distance) large flowers, with avocado green/red veined foliage makes this a uniquely beautiful specimen year round. Grows to about 3-4 ft. tall. Loves full sun and hot, dry weather. Frost hardy to 0 degrees F. if given deep mulch. Regular watering.

'Endeavor' - To 5-6 ft. tall with lance shaped glaucus green leaves and medium sized bright red flowers. A Longwood Garden aquatic canna - plant in ponds no deeper than 8 inches underwater. Good in or out of water. We no longer grow this variety as it was determined to have Canna Yellow Mottle Virus in May 2005.

'Erebus' - To 4-5 ft. tall with lance shaped glaucus green leaves and medium sized salmon-pink flowers. A Longwood Garden aquatic canna - plant in ponds no deeper than 8 inches underwater. Good in or out of water.

'Grande' - A very tall plant to 7-10 ft. tall with large banana-like leaves with red highlights on the leaves and stems. Produces small orange flowers. A good plant for a tropical accent. - We are no longer growing this cultivar.

'Herb's White' - This Herb Kelly select seedling from Canna 'North Star' is a dwarf canna that grows to 2-3 foot tall and has flowers that emerge a pale yellow and ages to white. We are also growing 'New White' from Herb.

'Intrigue' A very dark narrow upright plant to 6 ft. tall with purplish colored lance shaped leaves and orchid-like orange flowers. Keeps foliage color well, even in shade. (Kelly)

'Lucifer' A dwarf to medium sized plant to 3-4 feet tall with bright red flowers that have a yellow edge around all parts.

'Lucifer's Brother'- An attractive cultivar growing to 2-3 ft. tall with yellow-edged red petals. Looks like a reverse of the cultivar 'Lucifer' which it was a sport of that appeared in our nursery. Plant in full sun. Loves heat and regular irrigation . Frost hardy to 0 degrees F. if given deep mulch. We have also called this 'Lucifer Yellow in the past and we have an unnamed sport that is salmon and yellow - could this be Lucifer's sister? Both plants discovered at San Marcos Growers by Field Supervisor Arturo Garcia. We no longer grow this variety as it was determined to have Canna Yellow Mottle Virus in May 2005.

'Mellow Yellow' ('Dwarf Yellow') A very nice small canna, growing to 2 to 3 feet tall with large clear yellow flowers. (Kelly)

'Mrs. Pierre S. du Pont' - A beautiful 4-6 ft. tall plant with deep pink flowers. (Wintzer) - We are no longer growing this plant but you can still get it at Old House Gardens

'New White' - Large, cream white flowers on 2-3 ft. tall plant. This plant is very similar to 'Herb's White' but is taller and appears a little less yellow.

'Panache' - Another great plant from Herb Kelly. This medium sized plant grows from 3-6 ft. tall with lance shaped green leaves and orchid-like flowers which emerge a pale peach color from yellow buds. One of Randy's favorite Canna. We no longer grow this variety as it was determined to have Canna Yellow Mottle Virus in May 2005.

'Pink Starburst' ['Technicolor'] A very showy dwarf Canna that only grows 18 to 24 inches tall.  'Pink Starburst'  has pink flowers with foliage that has dark red stripes highlighted with pink, bronze, and pale yellow striping much like Canna 'Durban'. We received this plant in 1997 under the name 'Technicolor' but note that it is correctly named Canna 'Pink Sunburst' We no longer grow this variety as it was determined to have Canna Yellow Mottle Virus in May 2005..

'President' A large hybrid to 6-8 ft. tall with big scarlet red flowers and wide green leaves. An old fashioned hybrid - great for large background plantings. (Wintzer)

'Pretoria' - (Canna x generalis striata) - A large Canna, growing 6-8 ft. tall with very attractive yellow striping on the leaves and large orange flowers. One of the showiest cannas. Good for accent plantings. We no longer grow this variety as it was determined to have Canna Yellow Mottle Virus in May 2005.

'Pride of India' ('Taj Mahal') Large rich rose-pink flowers green foliage to 4-5 feet tall. If you like pink flowers this is the plant for you.

'Ra' - To 4-5 ft. tall with lance shaped glaucus green leaves and medium sized bright yellow flowers. A Longwood Garden aquatic canna - plant in ponds no deeper than 8 inches underwater. Good in or out of water. We no longer grow this variety as it was determined to have Canna Yellow Mottle Virus in May 2005.

'Regal Red' - A large Canna, growing to 6-8 ft. tall with red stripes in the large green leaves and orange-red flowers. Looks like a red Abyssinian Banana. - We are no longer growing this cultivar.

'Red Stripe' - A large Canna, growing to 6-8 ft. tall with red stripes in the large green leaves and orange-red flowers. Very tropical looking. (Malcom) - We are no longer growing this cultivar.

'Sangria' - This is a vegetative sport discovered in our nursery from Canna 'Cleopatra' with large green leaves streaked with maroon and rich orange red flowers. It grows to 6 feet tall and blooms late spring through late summer. Hardy to 0 degrees with medium to high water needs. A great new foliage canna with nice flowers as well. Discovered at San Marcos Growers by Field Supervisor Arturo Garcia. We no longer grow this variety as it was determined to have Canna Yellow Mottle Virus in May 2005.

'Stuttgart' - Tuberous perennial with green foliage splashed w/ white. Full sun. Moderate water needs. Orange flowers in summer-fall. 6-8' tall. Hardy. Small salmon flowers and white and green variegated foliage. A great foliage plant in spring but tends to foliage burn in summer, even in the shade. Still looks great from a distance.

'Taney' - To 4-5 ft. tall with lance shaped glaucus green leaves and medium sized burnt-orange flowers. A Longwood Garden aquatic canna - plant in ponds no deeper than 8 inches underwater.

'Technicolor' We now grow this plant under the name 'Pink Sunburst'

'Topaz'  This 4-6 ft. canna has flowers with a new exotic blend of color; beginning with deep orange buds with yellow on the margins, opening to a light pastel orange-apricot and finally to a pink-rose. (Sheppard)

'Transvaal Beauty' - A tall variety to 6-8 ft tall with medium green foliage and large yellow flowers that have red splashes. Introduced by Gary Hammer. We no longer grow this variety as it was determined to have Canna Yellow Mottle Virus in May 2005.

'Tropical Sunrise' - stunning plant to 4-6 feet tall with green foliage and an exciting flower color combination of orange, pink and peach. (Sheppard)

'Wisley Dwarf' - A small growing plant rarely exceeding 3 ft. tall with green leaves and small reddish orange flowers. A good choice for a smaller garden.

'Yellow Glow' - This Herb Kelly hybrid has the aquatic growing Longwood hybrids as a pollen parent and can be grown either in or out of the water. This 4-6 foot plant has bright yellow blossoms with an orange-rose blend in the throat.

'Zulu Pink' - An outstanding plant that grows only 3 feet tall and makes dramatic statement with short broad leaves that are dark reddish black with a smoky gray cast and beautiful flared open pink flowers.  One of our favorite Canna lilies. The Zulu varieties were introduced by Sheppard.

'Zulu Rose' - This rose-red-flowering dwarf Canna grows to 2-3' tall and has broad dark gray maroon foliage. The Zulu varieties were introduced by Sheppard. Full sun. Although a nice foliage plant the flowers of 'Zulu Rose' are a better color against the dark foliage - for this reason we have discontinued growing this darker Zulu hybrid.