storing canna bulbs?

jeanr(6)November 22, 2009

i need to dig my canna's and am wondering how to bust them up. will i need to divide along a central root? will pieces with just a few roots be viable? pictures of divided canna's would be great, if any one can sent.



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pitimpinai(z6 Chicago)

You can just break them apart. The part with an eye will grow to an new plant easily.
I borrowed this picture from google.
Break off where the arrow points:

Don't worry about roots. New roots will grow readily.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2009 at 5:52PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

though they can be broken apart... clean slicing with a sharp knife.. and leaving them to dry thoroughly before packing will work better ...

more tomorrow


    Bookmark   November 22, 2009 at 6:51PM
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thank you both for your feedback. the picture was very helpful.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2009 at 7:14PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

hey jean

think potato .... how would you store them for 4 months dry .... dark ...

we used to put them under the basement stairs ... on the cement floor .... and dad would water them once or twice a winter.... just to offset the furnace dryness ...

we used to take a wooden bushel basket .... link it with something natural.. like some newspaper.. and lay the cleaned bulbs in there.. with some dryish [damp but NOT wet] compost.. shredded leaves.. or peat .... not too deep or they will start to crush each other .... and then loosely cover with a few more sheets of print ...

bulbs were dug in z5 a few weeks before halloween... [because i used the stalks for decoration] .. and left on the ground to dry ... then they are cut up.. one eye per cut and again left to scab or dry ..

ALL THE RATTY ONES WERE COMPOSTED .... its just not worth trying to save a couple extra... yet have them rot and destroy the whole bunch .... again .... think bag of potatoes.... you have to get rid of the bad one.. or it will ruin the whole bag ...

you are z6.. gotta be about the same ....

be brutal in what you save ... plant one.. get about 6... 6 next year and you get 36... pretty soon... you will be throwing them away by the car load ... stay with clean.. healthy A+ stock.. and your job will be much easier ....

check them once a month.. and if they look like they are starting to shrivel.. add A LITTLE WATER to the basket ....

i NEVER HAD LUCK INTRODUCING PLASTIC into the equation at any level .... lack of proper ventilation can cause molds.. mildews.. rots.. etc .... cardboard boxes are another alternative..

good luck


    Bookmark   November 23, 2009 at 8:59AM
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I never had much luck storing cannas after digging them. Some would make it, but a lot would rot.

Finally, I changed my method. Grow them right in large pots, when fall comes, I just let them dry out a few days, cut off the foliage, and store them pot and all in the basement.

Works great. They thrive.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2009 at 12:05PM
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arbo_retum(z5 ,WinchstrMA)

the potted ones which i grow in water urns- i store as is in my 60 degree cellar. the others- i cut down the foliage, dig up, let air dry a few days, and store in brown paper bags in the same cellar. i divide them in the spring if needed. no muss no fuss. never had any shrivel, myself. tough little devils!

    Bookmark   December 2, 2009 at 1:20AM
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gonativegal(zone 5a)

I am storing my cannas this year a new way - in a canna grave outside.

Janet Macunovich recommends in zone 5 (she is in Michigan and I'm in Chicago) that you can create a pit outdoors at least 18 inches to 24 inches in depth and store cannas that way after they've been allowed to dry and scab over first.

I've taken half my stash, stored a portion of it the way I always do in a cardboard box after drying out in the garage for a week and put in the basement. The other half I stashed in my canna grave (I dug down 18 inches) and covered with a couple inches of shredded leaves. Hopefully this will work and that will cut down on the amount of stuff I have to store in my basement. I've already got another box filled with geraniums and citronella.

    Bookmark   December 2, 2009 at 7:49PM
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