The coleus plant......is it a annual or perennial ? - Knowledgebase Question

Name: Gail Richards
Walnutport,PA
Question by fussigardner
September 9, 2017
Have lots of these in my deck railing boxes. Hate to see them all die off when the cold comes. Do they return next spring or could I bring them in the house or should I just let them all die off and buy all new ones next year : ( They are so big and bushy now. Sooooo.....what should I do?
ALSO!!! When can I plant Cannas?

Name: Richard Kirk

A comment from krekirk
May 26, 2018
Coleus are one of the easiest plants to propagate. In August or September, take as many stem cuttings as you like, dip them in rooting hormone (speeds rooting) and stick them in a pot with good potting soil. Water them and stand back. Keep them inside during the winter by a bright window or under a grow light. I do this here in Houston because we never know if we will get a hard freeze which will kill the coleus. I do this with a number of other of my favorite tropicals, just in case.

Name: Rj
Just S of the twin cities of M (Zone 4b)
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Answer from crawgarden
September 11, 2017

3

Gail, it looks like your zone is 6a or 6b, Cannas would not normally overwinter in your zone,. If you want to keep them, I would suggest to dig them up aft a freeze kills the leaves, than cut the vegetation off, wash the canna tubers off than allow them to dry outside. Aft they are dry you can just put them in a brown paper bag until the spring.

Name: Gail Richards
Walnutport,PA
A comment from fussigardner
September 12, 2017
OK.......Great.......That is what I'll do. Thanks again!

Name: Christine
Saugerties, NY zone 5a
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A comment from Christine
September 15, 2017
Gail, I store my canna's in the brown paper bags and put them in the crisper drawer of my fridge, I do mist them every 6 weeks so the bulbs wont dry up..

Name: Bradley Beard
Rialto,California Southwest (Zone 10a)
Just ask and I will try to answer
A comment from Mybigbro
May 26, 2018
My family that lives in South East MO and North East AR grow Cannas and they leave them in the ground but they cut off the foliage after a frost and cover them with mulch

Name: Susan
Grandrivers, ky
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Answer from skbrill61
December 16, 2017

2

For the 3 years I've tended cannas. In western Kentucky (Patti's 1800 settlement) , I've not done anything to the cannas other then let the stalks die and self seed. Then I cut the stalks off at the ground. I do keep the fallen leaves over them for the winter. They come back on their own

Name: Tiffany purpleinopp
Opp, AL 🌵🌷⚘🌹🌻 (Zone 8b)
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Answer from purpleinopp
September 11, 2017

1

Taking a perennial to a location where cold winters kill it does not make it an annual. But selling it as one prevents any unrealistic expectations or disappointment.

Perennials are given a zone that indicates the climates in which they are hardy (can survive indefinitely, in the ground outside all year.) You can find your zone here:
https://garden.org/nga/zipzone...

Coleus is a perennial, a tropical shrub, that is not hardy except in warm, frost-free zones.

Cannas are reliably hardy in the ground outside from around Zone 7 and upward (warmer.) If you live at the colder side of Z7 or lower (colder,) their survival in the ground could require some zone-cheating measures, like being against a basement wall or brick patio that prevents the ground from freezing, or being covered by a pile of leaves that would accomplish the same thing.

If you have a basement, you can take potted Cannas to the basement for a winter rest after cold knocks the foliage down, then take back outside when nights are regularly at least high 40's at night. I did that for years when I lived in central OH (Z5.)

Name: Gail Richards
Walnutport,PA
A comment from fussigardner
September 11, 2017
Unfortunatly I plan on planting them along side my shed. It just sits up on cement blocks but I have it all circled with large rocks and Hostos on one side each side of the double doors. So far the hostos have done great in the past 10 years...so hopefully the cannas with do OK also. Should I dig up the bulbs after they die off in the following fall or just cover the ground area along the shed with lots of mulch???? Gail

Name: Cristy Giddens
Albemarle, NC (Zone 7a)
Answer from beachroses1
May 26, 2018

1

I live in the Piedmont area of North Carolina, zone 7, Coleus is considered an annual here. Cannas however will overwinter quite well


Answer from Lauram847
May 26, 2018

1

Here in the Chicagoland area, zone 5, Coleus is grown as an annual. I however love the plants for their extraordinary array of colors and leaf shapes. Because of this reason, I find it easier on my wallet to take small 2 inch cuttings in late September or early October depending on the weather. I will take as many as 200 cuttings which I root over the winter in a small pop up greenhouse that I keep in my basement. I use grow lights and usually have to pot them up at least once during the winter but by spring they are ready to go. I share them with friends and garden clubs. It is a touch of summer for me during the long winter which can last 6 - 7 months here.

Here is a picture of the plants in the greenhouse.

Thumb of 2018-05-26/Lauram847/46e5e5

And here are some of them out in the garden during the summer with some Rex begonias and oxalis that I also winterover.




Thumb of 2018-05-26/Lauram847/6aaeaf

Name: Rj
Just S of the twin cities of M (Zone 4b)
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Answer from crawgarden
September 10, 2017

0

Coleus would be an annual in your portion of the country, you could pot some up and put them in a bright window or take cuttings and put them in jars of water in a window area. Good thing is that they are relatively inexpensive and you can purchase new, new spring.
Cannas would get planted next spring.

Name: Gail Richards
Walnutport,PA
A comment from fussigardner
September 10, 2017
Thanks so much......I probably will just bring in a small bunch and put in a pretty pot for my dinning room table until after Halloween. So I should wait and plant the Cannas maybe around the end of March 2018 ???

Name: Rj
Just S of the twin cities of M (Zone 4b)
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A comment from crawgarden
September 10, 2017
I would probably go a little latter, when the outside air temp stays 50 and above.

Name: Gail Richards
Walnutport,PA
A comment from fussigardner
September 11, 2017
OK.....Thanks so much : ) Gail

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