How to Store Canna Bulbs


Canna lily bulbs are hardy bulbs can that blossom into a beautiful and lush flower. The tropical appearance of the canna lily, which comes in a variety of colors, will add a decorative and attractive design element to your garden space. This summer-blooming bulb is ideal for any type of garden space, even small spaces. Storing the bulbs over the winter will give you a new fresh bulb to plant for spring. Typical to summer blooming bulbs, canna bulbs must be dug up and properly stored in order for them to propagate the following season.

Step 1

Dig up the canna bulbs after the frost has killed the foliage. Carefully dig up the bulbs by inserting the garden spade into the soil at a 45-degree angle. Gently push the spade into the soil and lift up, removing the bulb.

Step 2

Cut back the stems and foliage one to two inches using garden shears. Remove all soil and debris from the bulbs by gently shaking them. For caked-on clay soils, spray off the canna bulbs with water.

Step 3

Allow the canna bulbs to cure, or air dry in a cool spot, for two to three days. Make sure the space is dark and free of sunlight.

Step 4

Divide the bulb clumps into two to four bulbs and place them in a clean paper bag. Identify the contents of the bag by creating a label. Add a handful of peat moss to into the paper bag to retain moisture. Fold the paper bag over and staple to seal up the bulbs.

Step 5

Store the canna bulbs in a dark basement that is between 45 and 60 degrees. Periodically check the bulbs to make sure they are not dry, which can permanently damage the bulb. Add fresh peat moss if necessary.

Tips and Warnings

  • Before planting the bulb, make sure any area on the bulb you had to trim or cut, exposing an open wound, has properly dried out. This will prevent the bulb from being exposed to any harmful organisms that might be lurking in the soil.

Things You'll Need

  • Garden spade
  • Garden shears
  • Water
  • Paper bag
  • Label
  • Peat moss
  • Stapler


  • University of Minnesota
Keywords: canna bulbs, storing canna bulbs, canna bulb care

About this Author

Callie Barber has been writing professionally since 2002. Barber's love for design and writing inspired her to create Design Your Revolution, a blog that shares creative and affordable ways to decorate indoor and outdoor living environments. Her articles have appeared on and Barber holds a Bachelors of Arts in international studies from the University of North Carolina.