GROW GROUP LESSON FUCHSIA
Common Plant Name - Fuchsia (No fragrance, but hummingbirds love them.) Botanical Name : F. Hybrida (almost all garden Fuchsias)—at least 300 varieties in the West.
How the plant recycles life: Cuttings---also Seeds (although with seeds, there is little chance that the resulting plant will look like its parent plant.)
Growth habits : Can be a bush (up to 12”w)---or trailing (used in baskets), Or it can be compact. Prune in early spring to eliminate dead areas and promote growth. “Pinching back” causes it to be “bushier” and with more flowers. Fuchsias are “Semi-hardy”: they act like herbaceous perennials, dying back in winter and having new growth in spring.
Nutrients required : Fuchsias are heavy feeders. Fertilize every 1-2 weeks, but limit it in the fall, as the plant is getting ready to “winter.” N--Nitrogen (stem and leaf growth), P--Phosphate (feeds the roots) and K (which hardens the plant and enhances to color of the flower). Fuchsias love organic matter.
Soil needs : Potting compost—with vermiculite to help drainage. Soil needs to be water-retentive, yet porous. A common “mix” is 6-part compost/1-part perlite/1-part sharp grit.
Bloom time : all summer long (if cared for) until first frost. If you let berries form, you have fewer flowers.
Shade/Sun exposure : Prefers SHADEor semisun; coolhumid atmosphere; doesn’t like wind or heat.
Water needs : Fuchsias don’t like “wet feet”but also don’t let them dry out or get hot. Better to water early in the dayand, if necessary, later in the evening. Soil should always be dampbut not wet. Fuchsias need drainage.
Predators & Problems : spider mites and white flies (in CA). Keep an eye for insects where stem and leaves meet. Frequent overhead watering can help. Spray underside of leaves with general allpurpose insecticide. Propagated/germination date : Earlier in yearspring is perfect. Not in winter. Extra notes : Cuttings can also be started in water. Then after about 4 weeks, when roots appear, they can be planted in soil.
Planting notes : Can use 21/4 “ potor 34 cuttings in a 3” potor multiple cuttings in plastic modular tray. Use stick or finger to make hole. If fuchsias are planted in the ground, they need to be planted deep like a tomato (4”6” deep). Can transplant potted plants into ground in autumn, about a month before a freeze. (Note: plastic containers heat up. Concrete, clay and wood help modulate temps.)
if planted in pots, plants can be covered with ventilate plastic to retain moisture, but you can remove plastic once roots have started (in about 34 weeks)