Canna Lily help please?

Diane Donald
May 14, 2019

My son gifted me with a lovely dark magenta colored canna lily in a 6" pot for Mother's Day. I know very little about them. Do they like sun or shade? Should I fertilize it? Can they be removed from the pot and planted someplace in my garden? Thank you so much.

Comments (10)

  • Cyntia

    oh that was nice :) they love the heat and full sun, pots are better otherwise they spread, if you're okay with spreading plant them in the ground. You can fertilize with a premix specifically for bulbs or you can do what I do and just make sure and add lots of compost at the beginning of the grow season. They usually die off in the fall and comeback next spring. The nice part is that you'll have a ton of seeds to save or give away. Plants are great they are gifts that keep giving. Enjoy!!

  • Diane Donald


    Thanks so much for answering my questions. That is really helpful to me. If I leave it in this original pot, will it come back again next year?

  • Cyntia

    Glad to help, I’m no expert but I try. Anyways, yeah they should be fine in the same pot but eventually they will need repotted and divide. Also, i live in zone washington and just make sure to cover them with mulch or in containers place them somewhere like your garage for the dormancy period. oh by the way I think you have The Tall Canna Lily - Australia

  • Cyntia

    I have the green and white leafs with mixed color heads :) love them. They make me feel like I’m in the tropics hehe

  • Diane Donald

    Thanks so much for all your help Cyntia. The Canna Lillies are so beautiful.

  • Cyntia

    No problem have a great day!

  • canna2grow

    Diane, if I may interject a slightly different opinion:

    A 6" pot is fine to "start" a canna rhizome or seedling in at the beginning of the season but you will typically need a 12" to 18" container for a typical growing season. You can certainly transplant your canna directly into the ground for the season and not be overly concerned about it becoming invasive in most locations. You will need to provide water and nutrients for max results. Winter temperatures determine your need to protect the rhizome from freezing.

    Best, Kent

  • Diane Donald

    canna2grow ~ I appreciate your help on this. When my son gave this plant to me, it was already in a 6" pot. When would you recommend I plant it into the ground? I am in zone 8. BC Canada. It is still in bloom. Very dark magenta blooms. Thanks again.

  • canna2grow


    Growing canna plants are usually planted outside after “ALL” danger of a frost has passed.

    Your available growing location best determines your choice of growing in ground or investing in large containers to be grown on a patio or a sunny location of your choice.

    Canna's growing in containers typically require more care to ensure adequate water supply and the mature plant is subject to be blown over in strong winds and becoming root bound.

    Plants growing in the ground do require some weeding and occasional watering and nutrients.

    This first year I would place it where you will receive the most enjoyment and where you can provide the best care.



  • Diane Donald

    Thanks so much Kent. This really helps me a lot. I think I'll keep it in the pot on my deck for awhile and later plant it in the ground.

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