How to Landscape With Canna Lilies


Canna lilies are very dramatic in the landscape; their light green stripes on broad, dark green leaves and the bright colors of the flowers, from orange to yellow to white, give them a tropical feel. Perfect for poolside, for accents, and tall enough to serve as summer borders, use canna lilies in your landscaping to make a statement.

Step 1

Plant canna lilies by digging up the ground to about 12 inches deep; work in potting soil or organic compost, then place the bulbs so they are completely underground and the stem is just at soil surface.

Step 2

Plant a row of canna lilies against a southern- or eastern-facing wall. The broad green leaves and bright flowers will pop out and their height, up to 6 feet, isn't overwhelmed by big structures.

Step 3

Repeat the canna lily theme by adding them to a border or around trees. They'll die back in the winter, but they create a lush look and more privacy during the summer months when you spend more time outdoors.

Step 4

Add another planting around the pool, patio, deck, or other outdoor seating area. Just be sure the spot you pick isn't water-logged, advises the University of Arizona Cooperative Extension Service. A group of these tropical flowers in hot orange or yellow really creates the feeling of an island escape.

Step 5

Complete the canna lily landscaping by growing a group in a container and place it somewhere near the front door. Use pots or containers that are large enough to provide a counter balance to the height of the canna lilies, which grow from 3 to 6 feet. This will complete a circle in the landscaping, giving you continuity from the front to the back with the repetition of the canna lilies.

Step 6

Dig up and divide canna lilies every two to three years; give away the extras or extend your landscaping by adding additional containers and plantings in borders, around trees, along fences and near benches or swings.

Things You'll Need

  • Canna lily bulbs
  • Shovel
  • Potting soil or organic compost
  • Pot or container


  • Canna Lily Information Sheet: University of Arizona Cooperative Extension
Keywords: landscape tropical, canna lily landscape, tropical flowers

About this Author

Annie Mueller is a writer, editor, professional blogger, website designer, and tutor. She attended Missouri Baptist College and earned her Bachelor of Arts in English from Mississippi State University, with a Summa Cum Laude standing. She has written extensively on gardening, parenting, education, and personal growth for women.