Friday, 11 April 2008

Bernard's new Canna Group

Canna 'Elaroo'

A few months ago I wrote descriptions of several new Canna cultivars introduced by Bernard Yorke, the Canna hybridist from Australia. I was at a little bit of a loss, as I could not assign them to the existing Canna Groups. The existing groups for those with short memory retention (like me!) are:
  • Foliage Group- right foliage, but flowers too small.
  • Crozy Group - flowers are OK, but the overall plant size and foliage size is much larger than this group permits.
  • Italian Group - although a contributing group, it does not match the overall size, foliage size or flower size.
  • Miniature Group - definitely too large
  • Variegated Group - obviously not.
  • Conservatory Group - not been tested in conservatory conditions.
  • Agriculture Group - no connection with agriculture.
  • Premier Group - flowers way too small for this group
  • Aquatic Group - no aquatic connections.
These were cultivars that Bernard had created by crossing Canna 'Red Stripe' of the Foliage Group with Canna 'Bengal Tiger', of the Italian Group. The latter are very tall, with very large foliage, but with flowers that are much larger than the traditional Foliage Group.

Then it eventually dawned on me, the reason that they did not fit into any of the existing groups was because they *ARE* different. Nobody, before, has introduced cultivars with this breeding behind them. So, I believe that we now have a new cultivar group on our hands. Well done to Bernard Yorke!

All we need now is a suitable name for the group. It appears that the originator normally decides the cultivar group name, so come on Bernard, let's have a name for this group of cultivars.

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