Grower Select: Cleopatra Canna Lily
Do you love the bold, brassy summer blooms of Canna Lillies, but can’t decide if you want red blossoms or yellow? With Cleopatra Canna, you don’t have to choose! This spellbinding Spirit boasts big, glowing golden flowers, liberally splashed with splotches and specks of fire-engine-red. What’s more, the leaves are wonderfully indecisive as well! The broad, smooth, green foliage is streaked throughout with patches of dark purple-red pigment. Cleopatra is a compact form of Canna; although it makes a powerful statement, it doesn’t overwhelm the landscape, and it fits into most gardens. Make it the queen of yours!
- Hardiness Zone: 8-12
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Few plants project a spirit of Tropicalissmo like Cannas. Indeed, these heat-loving beauties do hail from the tropics. Their native ranges extend from the Deep South in the United States through Central and South America. A bit of a botanical oddity, the group is the only living genus in its whole family. Canna is distantly related to gingers and bananas, plants which can also be added to the tropical-style garden to great effect. Cleopatra is an heirloom variety that’s enjoying a resurgence in popularity. It is also known as Yellow King Humbert Canna.
Cannas love moist soil, and Cleopatra will eagerly accept all the water you give it. It will look especially lush and regal at the edge of a pond or other water feature. You can even grow it in a pond with its crown a couple of inches below the water’s surface.
How to Grow
All-day sun is a must for Cleopatra Canna, especially in cooler climates. Growth will be strongest and flowering most profuse where summers are hot. Plant Cleopatra in rich, organic soil, mulch well, and provide a steady supply of water. Feed annually with Bower & Branch Elements™ Fertilizer. After the first frost, dig up the rhizomes (roots) for winter protection. Wash them clean and let them dry for a week. Then store them in a cool, humid, frost-free place such as a basement during the cold months. Where winter lows don’t drop below 20ºF, Cannas may be left in the ground over the winter.
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