All the recent rainfall in Central Texas has loosened the soil, making it the perfect time to dig up and divide bulbs and rhizomes. Our house came with a section of orange canna lilies which have become very overcrowded, so I figured it was time to get digging and dividing.
First, I cut the stalks down. It makes it much easier to dig up the rhizomes.
Using a shovel, I dug out huge clumps of the canna lilies. These babies were long overdue for some dividing. To divide, I first tried to get as much dirt off the roots as possible. I then started breaking the rhizomes apart, making sure to leave at least one eye or stalk on each plant.
Here is an example of a two-inch piece of rhizome that had two eyes where small shoots were coming out.
Me diligently working on dividing the cannas.
By the time it was all said and done, I had about 200 rhizomes. I decided to keep about 100 for myself and pass along the other 100. I gave about 20 each to five of my lucky friends and neighbors. I love passing along plants for others to enjoy!
I then replanted my cannas. I planted them about 1 foot apart. The instructions I read said to plant them 1-2 feet apart. I had so many, I decided to keep it on the closer side. It means that I'll have fuller foliage, but that I'll have to divide the cannas again a little sooner.
I had so many that I spaced them out in twice the area they were in before, fitting about 50 rhizomes in the picture above, but that left me with still another 50 to plant, so I decided to plant them along the back of the border, behind the gardenias and pomegranate tree. Hopefully they look good next year and I won't have to divide them for a few more years!