Floral Friday: Cannas

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Cannas are very popular in New Zealand as they are very easy to grow and need little maintenance.

Canna (or canna lily, although not a true lily) is a genus of 19 species of flowering plants.[2][3][4] The closest living relations to cannas are the other plant families of the order Zingiberales, that is the Zingiberaceae (gingers), Musaceae (bananas), Marantaceae, Heliconiaceae,Strelitziaceae, etc.[5]

Canna is the only genus in the family Cannaceae. The APG II system of 2003 also recognizes the family, and assigns it to the orderZingiberales in the clade commelinids, in the monocots.

The species have large, attractive foliage, and horticulturists have turned it into a large-flowered and bright garden plant. In addition, it is one of the world’s richest starch sources, and is an agricultural plant.[5]

Although a plant of the tropics, most cultivars have been developed in temperate climates and are easy to grow in most countries of the world as long as they receive at least 6–8 hours average sunlight during the summer, and are moved to a warm location for the winter. See the Canna cultivar gallery for photographs of Canna cultivars.

The name Canna originates from the Latin word for a cane or reed.[6]

As I am researching about the flowers I am finding out how floral plants are not just decorative, but useful as well.

Uses

Detail of the seed pods and seeds: The seeds are used for jewelry and musical instruments.

  • Some species and many cultivars are widely grown in the garden in temperate and subtropical regions. Sometimes, they are also grown as potted plants. A large number of ornamental cultivars have been developed. They can be used in herbaceous borders, tropical plantings, and as a patio or decking plant.
  • Internationally, cannas are one of the most popular garden plants and a large horticultural industry depends on the plant.
  • The rhizomes of cannas are rich in starch, and it has many uses in agriculture. All of the plant has commercial value, rhizomes for starch (consumption by humans and livestock), stems and foliage for animal fodder, young shoots as a vegetable, and young seeds as an addition to tortillas.
  • The seeds are used as beads in jewelry.[14]
  • The seeds are used as the mobile elements of the kayamb, a musical instrument from Réunion, as well as the hosho, a gourd rattlefrom Zimbabwe, where the seeds are known as hota seeds.
  • In more remote regions of India, cannas are fermented to produce alcohol.[15]
  • The plant yields a fibre from the stem, which is used as a jute substitute.[16]
  • A fibre obtained from the leaves is used for making paper. The leaves are harvested in late summer after the plant has flowered, they are scraped to remove the outer skin, and are then soaked in water for two hours prior to cooking. The fibres are cooked for 24 hours with lye and then beaten in a blender. They make a light tan brown paper.[16]
  • A purple dye is obtained from the seed.[16]
  • Smoke from the burning leaves is said to be insecticidal.[16]
  • Cannas are used to extract many undesirable pollutants in a wetland environment as they have a high tolerance tocontaminants.[17][18]
  • In Thailand, cannas are a traditional gift for Father’s Day.
  • In Vietnam, canna starch is used to make cellophane noodles known as miến dong.
  • Canna leaves (1 of 1)
  • The leaves are very colourful as well. I love how the colours really stand out in the sun.
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One Word Photo Challenge: Scarlet

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Good morning from a very windy Hastings.  Yesterday we reached the nation’s high of 26 degrees celsius.  Easily the hottest day so far.  But the wind drives me nuts.

This week Jennifer has given us the colour of scarlet.  Red is one of the hardest colour to capture.  I  know because I have some strange coloured photos when they are supposed to be a nice deep red. But I did find these photos that were closest to what the original subjects were.

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For some reason I found my 5S is more accurate in retaining colour than my Fujifilm.

One Word Photo Challenge: Scarlet

http://irisgreenwald.wordpress.com/2014/10/29/one-word-photo-challenge-scarlet-2/

http://nowathome.wordpress.com/2014/10/28/one-word-photo-challenge-scarlet/

http://sillarit.wordpress.com/2014/10/28/one-word-photo-challenge-scarlet/

http://irisgreenwald.wordpress.com/2014/10/28/one-word-photo-challenge-scarlet/

http://bastet1952.wordpress.com/2014/10/28/one-word-photo-scarlet-october-28-2014/

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Thanks for visiting.  I must apologise for not answering your comments.  After talking to my son we decided that this computer doesn’t really like the internet but I will try today.

Cheers

Phoneography Challenge: Macro

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Good morning from a another damp Hastings day.

What else to do when there is nothing on TV but play around with my phone and photo editing apps.  At least that is what I did last night.   I read about a new app yesterday in my reader so found it last night and played around with it.  Those I will show later.

Anyway this week the challenge is macro.  I have seen some really awesome posts so far this morning.

So here are mine.  They have all been edited with Snapseed.  I am really impressed with the camera on the 5S. It is really sharp and the zoom on it is great.

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This is another photo taken at the same time as my post last Friday in the Look Up, Look Down challenge.

Then I found some small hydrangeas that were interesting both from the front and back of the blooms.

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I have no idea what flower this is but it came out well.

Here are the other great posts I read this morning.

http://lensandpensbysally.wordpress.com/2014/04/14/phoneography-and-non-slr-digital-devices-photo-challenge-macro-topography-of-seasonings-going-on-holiday/

http://sustainabilitea.wordpress.com/2014/04/14/phoneography-and-non-slr-digital-devices-photo-challenge-macro-up-close-in-the-kitchen/

http://completelydisappear.wordpress.com/2014/04/14/hello-stranger/

http://piecesofstarlight.wordpress.com/2014/04/14/phoneography-topography-of-sweet-opportunities-to-hop/

Thank you for visiting and thanks for all the wonderful comments yesterday.  I really appreciate them all.

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