Canna bulbs are rhizomes--thick underground stems that grow horizontally--but they are usually referred to as bulbs. Purchasing high-quality canna bulbs can make a big difference in the health and appearance of your garden. Store your bulbs properly until planting time; bulbs that are mishandled deteriorate rapidly.
Go online or visit your local nursery to choose canna bulb varieties and colors that complement your garden. Use the picture on the label, bin or catalog as a guide.
Place your catalog or online order in the fall through midwinter for bulbs that you will plant in the spring. Popular varieties sell out early. Many mail-order suppliers offer a discount for early orders, so check the discount dates. Allow sufficient time for delivery.
Choose large bulbs for the largest flowers. Smaller bulbs cost less, but they will produce smaller flowers.
Look for firm bulbs if you are buying them at a nursery. If the bulbs have soft or shriveled spots, bruises or cuts, don't buy them.
Avoid bulb clearance sales at the end of summer. These bulbs have often been sitting for a long time and may have deteriorated.
Store your canna bulbs in a dry location at about 40 to 50 degrees F until you are ready to plant them.