If you want to grow your canna garden, you should know how to start canna seeds in the UK. Growing canna from rhizomes is the easiest way to propagate these tropical flowers. Still, you can also grow cannas from seeds.
Cannas can be planted as small, inconspicuous accents or as beautiful focal points in your garden. If you’re interested in growing cannas from seeds to see how they would turn out, then it’s certainly worth a try.
Planting Cannas and Harvesting the Seeds
One should plant cannas outdoors in early summer or late spring. Soil temperature should be 60°F. You can also plant cannas in greenhouses or pots indoors if the planting season is short.
Canna lilies need moist soil and a lot of sunshine, so pick a site that receives at least four hours of sunlight daily. You should also loosen the soil and add a 2″ to 4″ layer of compost.
Seed pods will develop once the blooms spent. The pods are round, green, spiky, and usually contain one to three seeds. You can harvest the seeds once the pods become dry.
The pods will open up, and that’s when you can easily squeeze the black seeds out. Collecting the seeds is easy because they are big and shiny.
How to Start Canna Seeds in the UK
It’s not easy to grow cannas from seeds. It would help if you softened the seed coat before planting them. The process is time-consuming, so you should prepare the seeds for at least one to two months before planting them outside. Germination usually takes one to two weeks. Here are two ways to germinate canna seeds.
Before sowing the seeds in a commercial medium, soak them in water for 24 hours. Then, cover the canna seeds and water the medium. Let the medium drain for several minutes. Cover the pot with a freezer bag and keep it in a warm place.
You also need to keep the medium’s temperature at 70 to 75 F. Once the seeds grow, remove the bag, and put the seedlings under fluorescent lights or near a sunny window. Transplant the seedlings into individual containers once they are big enough to handle.
Another way to encourage seed germination is by chipping the seeds before planting them. The hard coating of the seeds can affect the speed of germination. It would help if you were careful when chipping the seeds, though. Rub it off just until the white part of the seed becomes visible.
You can use a blade or file to rub off the seed coating. Sandpaper and nail clippers will also work. The best thing about this method is that you can plant scarified seeds directly in the germination medium without soaking them in water.
However, it would help if you kept the container warm throughout the gardening season. But if you still want to soak the seeds, you’re free to do so. Soak the seeds in water for two days.
Once they germinate, you can plant them either in 3″ to 4″ flowerpots or individual cell trays. Using the latter is convenient because you won’t need to plant them individually when they’re older.
If you’re only going to plant a few seeds, it’s better to use plastic flowerpots. You can plant three to five seeds in a pot to reduce the stress of untangling the roots when you need to transplant them.
Fertilise the seedlings with a 10-10-10 fertiliser after one week. Gardeners in eth UK usually propagate cannas from rhizomes, but you don’t need to worry if you don’t have one. You need to know how to start canna seeds in eth UK so that you can grow these blooms in your garden.
Why Start Your Canna Seeds in a Mini Greenhouse?
There are several reasons why you should start canna seeds in a mini greenhouse. However, many gardeners are hesitant to dabble into polytunnel gardening because buying or building one is expensive.
But the truth is, greenhouses come in different shapes and sizes. Mini greenhouses have a standard height of 6 feet, and they’re more affordable. These greenhouses are also a great way to start canna seeds or any seeds for that matter.
Seeds and seedlings are exceptionally delicate, and they need all the protection they could get. Mini greenhouses are perfect for starting your canna seeds. They offer all-year protection and warmth, so your plants will grow healthy and safe from the elements. Polytunnel equipment such as grow lights, fans, heaters, and coolers allows you to create your plants’ ideal growing environment.
Greenhouses also keep pests away from your plants. Aphids, mealybugs, spider mites, deer, moles, and other pests and animals can be detrimental to your plants. Keeping them inside a polytunnel may lower the risk of pest infestations.
Final Thoughts on How to Start Canna Seeds in the UK
What better way to add a touch of tropics to your garden than to plant canna lilies? Knowing how to start canna seeds in the UK from scratch lets you enjoy the beauty of these plants in your home. Starting from seed is the easiest way to plant canna lilies, and they grow best in USDA plant hardiness zones 8 to 11.