So, what was the year like?
As a Canna grower in the UK, this is the worst year we have ever experienced. The year had some warm temperature periods, but they totally lacked light, and were worse than any other that we have experienced in 20+ years. Every single plant in the collection of 200+ specimens produced poor foliage this year. Some because they have one of the Canna virus's, but others because they were experiencing stress due to the lack of light, the most essential requirement for photosynthesis.
We have maintained our strict quarantine management of the collection, and still have 100+ specimens that are virus free (as confirmed by laboratory analysis), and the rest in various degrees of virus acceptance. Those who criticise us for continuing to grow virus affected specimens separate from the main collection fail to recognise that there is 150 years of Canna inheritance that we have to preserve and protect. Such mature considerations are what it is all about in being a gardener. One day we will make all the old specimens virus-free! At one time, Canna was the most popular garden plant in the world. Our task is to make that happen again.
So, onto a New Year and Margaret and I wish all Canna lovers, wherever you are, a wonderful year of Canna and sunshine in 2010.