When writing, Bernard explained that plants of Tivoli are quite tall, (nearly 6ft) and leaves are obviously related to the pollen parent in that they are long green and quite pointed. However, the plants make a good sized clump quite quickly with foliage all pointing upwards. The rhizomes are not creeping like the pollen parent. Flowers are somewhat pendulous but nicely variegated. C. heliconifolia(Omega) is the pollen parent, “I have had some successes with using a species type as one of the parent plants, but a lot of ‘trashy’ ones can result before getting the special ones I am after.”
“We are now approaching winter in Queensland, and with a lot of recent heavy rain, rhizomes are already showing new growth from the base, and I haven’t yet cut them back to give the plants a rest for our short winter. I still have a moderate show of flowers in the garden, but as I said earlier, our winters are usually short lived, but with climate change, nothing is the norm any more.”
Cannas by Bernard Yorke
Temperatures have been falling across Britain as the country prepares for a cold snap coming in from the Arctic.
Winds are becoming increasingly northerly with temperatures expected to fall to below freezing overnight across large swathes of the country.
Unseasonally cold temperatures will be accompanied by wintry showers with hail, sleet and even snow on high ground.
Temperatures, which reached a mild 16C (61F) on Monday, are due to fall a few degrees everywhere during the day.
This means the end of the Canna growing season, and the collections plants have all been making a huge effort in the last few weeks to try and produce seed before the winter frost, but their efforts have been in vain this year.
Once again, we have had a very poor year for growing Canna, the early months being almost back to front, with high sun early on and then poor light and much rain when we should have been enjoying a summer.
The whole collection has hardly produced any seed again this year, the best indicator of how the crop has progressed during the year.
We will let the frost stop the growth and over a period of about a month we will move nearly 300 Cannas indoors for winter protection. Most will be planted in the soil inside a poly-tunnel, where the addition of a layer or two of fleece covering will protect these tropical plants from our English winter. Others will be taken into a polytunnel in their pots and will remain in the pots over the winter, again protected by fleece and with thermostatically controlled heaters.
Whether planted in the soil or left in pots the plants will still require some attention, weeding and ensuring that the soil does not dry out totally, and a fungicide spray occasionally to ensure that damp related problems do not occur.
Canna lovers who have taken photos over the summer are invited to send me copies and I will be pleased to publish them on the blog, and let us all try and bring back shared memories of the summer!