Fuchsias are loved for their bi-coloured, hanging bell-shaped flowers. They look like dancing skirts and have colourful, vibrant petals. There are many varieties of Fuchsia flowers, including white, magenta and purple, that lasts throughout the summer. Some varieties also have purple or red-tinged or golden foliage. You can experiment with growing fuchsias in pots or outdoors, they are easy flowers to care for.
The outer petals are actually the sepals that protect the flower petals below. They are usually purple to attract hummingbirds, but breeding has allowed for a wide range of colours. The flowers as well as the small purple berries they produce are both edible. You can crystallize the flowers and use them to decorate cakes or desserts. Some varieties bear fruits that have a peppery and citrusy flavor and can be used in jam making.
Where to Grow Fuchsia Plants?
Fuchsias can be grown in a variety of ways depending on their variety. They can be used as climbers, standalone shrubs, standards, informal hedges, or standards. They also make great bedding plants for patio displays.
Growing Fuchsias in Pots and Outdoors
Fuchsias can be grown in any location that has sun and good drainage. To get the best results, make sure to feed them regularly and keep their soil moist. In spring, prune hardy fuchsias. To encourage more flowers, you can pinch the stems of tender Fuchsias in spring. Protect tender fuchsias from winter.
Choosing which Fuchsia Variety to Grow
Fuchsias are either hardy or delicate. Fuchsias that are hardy can be grown outside in winter. They are best planted in a permanent location in the ground, either as a climber or specimen shrub.
Half-hardy (tender) fuchsias can be used to make borders or bedding for summer and fall displays. Some bush types are upright and can be used as borders or pots while others have a trailing habit which is great for hanging baskets, spilling over pot edges, or for hanging from the ceiling. Fuchsias which are half-hardy are susceptible to frost damage so they should be kept indoors during winter or used as annuals that can be thrown out at the end.
You can also buy and train tender, hardy fuchsias as standards. Containers are the best way to grow them, as they require winter protection.
Do Fuchsias like sun or shade?
Fuchsias can be grown in shade or sun. In the heat of summer, a sunny spot with a south-facing view can prove too hot. The pendant flowers should be in a sheltered spot since they can easily be blown away, especially if they are larger. Fuchsias will tolerate any soil type, but they must be well-drained.
Growing Fuchsias in Pots
Many fuchsias thrive in pots. Fuchsias that have a trailing habit can be grown in containers or hanging baskets. Bush types can also be trained to become standards. It is possible to buy pre-grown plants or you can grow them yourself. This can be a tedious process that can take many years. In spring, remove the lower sides shoots and support the plant using a cane. Standard fuchsias can be grown in containers. They’ll quickly fill the pot so it’s better to have no underplanting.
Plant hardy varieties in the spring or early summer. Before planting, make sure to add plenty of well-rotted organic material. Once it is firm, water it well. To lock in moisture and provide nutrients, add a thick layer mulch such as garden compost or well-rotted manure. You should water the plant regularly until it is established. Keep in mind that if you move hardy fuchsias, they will suffer, that’s why you should make sure you have the right spot.
How to Plant Fuchsias in Pots?
Half-hardy fuchsias can be planted in May after all danger of frost has passed. For a week or so before planting, harden them for about a week. Use a multi-purpose, peat-free compost with slow-release fertiliser if you are planting in pots. Make sure to water your plants.
Taking Care of Fuchsia Plants
Fuchsias once established should be able to grow in their own soil. However, they might need to be soaked in dry periods. Regularly water fuchsias from containers, making sure that the compost is not too dry. Any excess should be allowed to drain.
Mulch hardy fuchsias each spring with well-rotted manure/garden compost. This will lock in moisture, and feed the plant. A good idea is to scatter feed around the base. To encourage more blooms, you can feed fuchsias in pots with high-potash liquid plant food all through the summer.
Although dead flowers can often fall by themselves, it is important to regularly deadhead the plants so they continue to produce plenty of flowers.
Once new growth has started to appear, prune hardy fuchsias during spring. It’s okay if the stems are a bit brittle. Reduce the stems to two buds, so they are lower on the plant. Keep in mind that Fuchsias shouldn’t be pruned in autumn because doing so can expose the plants to pests, diseases, and even frost damage.
To produce bushier plants, you can pinch the tips of half-hardy fuchsia shoots in spring. They will bloom more freely.
Steps To Growing Fuchsias in Pots
In autumn, tender fuchsias can be taken from the ground or placed in pots and allowed to overwinter in cool, frost-free places such as a greenhouse, porch, or conservatory. Reduce watering, remove any diseased or dead growth and cut back by half. After they have gone dormant, and all their leaves are gone, you can place them in a frost-free shed or garage. You can top-up the pots in spring with new compost and slow-release fertilizer. You can keep hardy fuchsias in the garden, or in pots during winter. However, they may require protection in cold regions or during severe winters. To protect roots, apply thick mulch in autumn and cover them with fleece if needed. Standard fuchsias must be kept warm and dry, even if they are hardy.
How to Propagate Fuchsias
It is easy to grow tender fuchsias from softwood cuttings during summer. If you don’t have enough space to store your plants indoors, this is a great way to increase your stock. Hardwood cuttings can also be taken from hardy Fuchsias in Autumn.