My old grandma in Tennessee used to grow these Cannas and I guess that's why I've always loved them because I grew up watching them bloom all summer long. Cannas sure are nice accent plants especially if you need something tall or need something to bloom all summer long. And of course now they have them in different color foliage such as you see here, red and green as well. And, of course they have different color blooms. This red is pretty. I think that's the one my grandma used to grow, and now they have a real pretty orange or yellow one over there too.
A lot of people get all upset when they look at Cannas. They see these holes in the leaves and they don't know what in the world is causing this situation. If you ever made paper dolls when you were in school then you know what causes it. Because a Canna leaf is twirled or folded upon itself as it grows. There is a worm called, believe it or not, Canna worm, and it comes along and basically eats a hole in the side of that leaf just like you cut a hole to make a paper doll. Then as the leaf unfolds low and behold you have a pattern just like this. So that's what causes the hole.
Now there are varieties that are resistant to this kind of worm, or you can spray on a seven to ten day basis, or you can enjoy that leaf pattern to go along with the beautiful foliage and beautiful summer bloom of the Canna. So you might want to try some Cannas if you've got an appropriate place because they sure are beautiful at this time of the year and throughout the summer.
This is Jerry Parsons, Vegetable Specialist for the Texas Agricultural Extension Service, the Weekend Gardener.
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