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Fuchsia

Fuchsia plant

For those who do not want to overwinter fuchsias in the house, you can rely on some of our robust varieties. With a hardy fuchsia plant, you get a real long-lasting bloomer in the garden, which enchants until the first frost. A fuchsia plant for outdoor use proves to be very durable in good conditions and becomes more and more beautiful over time.

Especially the petite scarlet fuchsias (Fuchsia magellanica) are predestined for planting. In Central Europe, they usually grow like perennials, which is why the term perennial fuchsias are often used. Although their above-ground parts freeze in the winter, the plants willingly grow from below in the spring. The result is a colourful little shrub with elegant, overhanging branches and pointed flowers reminiscent of mini ballerinas. In a winter-mild region, it may well happen that over time the spreading growth can be admired, which even allows for an attractive flower hedge.

Garden Fuchsias Bloom Diligently in the Sun

It is known that fuchsia plants thrive in partially shaded areas. Hardy varieties, however, also like sunny sites, if the root area is kept sufficiently moist and cool, for example through the use of ground covers.

Fuchsias can be planted in small groups or as solitary plants between low-growing perennials, whereby they sprout relatively late. When most of the semi-shade perennials have already faded, the fuchsia plants adorn themselves with a variety of elegant flower bells until late autumn. Of course, they are also suitable as a decorative container plant for terraces and balconies.

Whether in distinctive reds and purples or in white – there is something for every desire in our Lubera® range. Here are some recommended varieties:

'Gracilis' is a popular, densely bushy variety with two-toned, purple pink flower bells. It is about 80 to 100 centimetres high and grows even higher in mild locations.

‘Hawkshead’ grows bushy and upright. The variety shows a variety of small, pure white flowers with greenish ends and reaches a height of 50 to 100 centimetres.

'Lady Thumb' is only about 50 centimetres high and is thus a dwarf among the winter hardy varieties. Its flowers are semi-double, carmine pink on the outside and white with pink veins on the inside.

   
 
Fuchsia magellanica 'Bernisser Hardy'

Fuchsia 'Bernisser Hardy'

Instead of: £5.90 * From £5.40 *

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Fuchsia magellanica 'Gracilis'

Instead of: £20.40 * From £18.40 *

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Fuchsia magellanica 'Hawkshead'

Fuchsie 'Hawkshead'

Instead of: £20.40 * From £18.40 *

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Fuchsia magellanica 'M. Popple'

Fuchsia 'M. Popple'

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Fuchsia magellanica 'Riccartonii'

Fuchsia 'Riccartonii'

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Fuchsia magellanica 'Tom Thumb'

Fuchsia 'Tom Thumb'

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Fuchsia plant

Worth Knowing About Fuchsias

The genus Fuchsia belongs to the family of the evening primrose family (Onagraceae). Most types of the around 100 species are found in the mountain forests of Central and South America.

Fuchsia magellanica is the mother of most hardy species. This species develops bright red flowers, and small, rich green, sawn leaves. In its home in the Andes regions of South America, it occurs at altitudes of up to 1700 metres and can reach a height of 3 metres. Their natural pollinators are hummingbirds. In Europe, different species of butterflies and bumblebees are observed instead. With good root protection, a hardy fuchsia can survive in the garden at temperatures down to -20 degrees Celsius.

This is also good to know: sometimes a fuchsia temporarily produces fewer flowers in very hot, dry summer weeks, but then it blooms even richer until there is frost.

Location and Soil

A semi-sunny site is generally ideal. The plant should also warm up slightly so that the plant will bud out relatively early in the spring. Fuchsias planted out in gardens tolerate more sun than potted plants and even bloom more abundantly – assuming there is adequate soil moisture. However, the location should not be constantly burning hot; slight shade in the midday hours is an advantage.

A loose, humus-rich soil with lots of nutrients provides the optimal conditions for good growth, whereby root pressure caused by woody plants is rather unfavourable. Waterlogging should be avoided at all costs. The soil pH should be in the slightly acidic range (5.5 to 6.5).

A fuchsia plant in a pot should ideally have a location on the west or east side of the house where it gets a little shade during the hot lunchtime.

Planting

If possible, plant a fuchsia in the spring (May and June) when frost is no longer expected. This allows the plant to then establish itself well until the cold season because only with a sufficiently large root ball will it be sufficiently hardy. For this reason, it is better to overwinter a small young plant in the house in the first year.

As winter hardy fuchsias regenerate from subterranean shoots, they should be planted deep in the ground (the base should be about 5 centimetres below the surface of the soil). The lower shoots are then covered with loose soil – in this way, the buds are well protected during the winter. This deep planting also allows the plants to form particularly strong roots.

Care and Fertilisation

During the growing season, you should water your outdoor fuchsia if it is very dry. The soil should never dry out completely. When it has a lack of water, a fuchsia plant will drop its flowers. Even a planter should always be sufficiently moist, but not kept wet. Good drainage at the bottom of the pot prevents waterlogging. Before every watering, the topmost layer of the soil should be dry.

Garden fuchsias should be fertilised only moderately, since otherwise the bloom formation, but also the winter hardiness with too late fertilisation (after August), are impaired. Before planting and in the coming spring, basic fertilisation should take place. The first follow-up application can be done when the first buds are visible. In a container, the plants should be moderately fertilised more often.

Overwintering

Fuchsia magellanica is hardy in our climate. It grows, as mentioned above, mostly like a shrub that dies above ground, but then regenerates itself from the rootstock. Most of the young, new shoots appear in April – depending on the respective spring weather, it can also last until May or even June. Light winter protection is advisable in any case. In autumn, lightly mound up the plant with soil and cover the soil generously with leaves, straw, twigs or bark mulch. The shoots can be shortened by a third after the first frost.

Fuchsias can also be planted with evergreen ground covers such as the small periwinkles or strawberries. The root ball of the fuchsia plants should be sufficiently protected from frost. In this way, no additional measures need to be taken in autumn.

A fuchsia plant in a container should be winterised frost-free despite its hardiness. It is deciduous and goes into a resting phase during the winter months, so it can also stand dark, for example, in an unheated garage. A temperature between 2 and 8 degrees Celsius is ideal. From the beginning of February, the location should be warmer and brighter again. When the plant starts to sprout again, watering can go back to normal. Before that, it should only be watered so that the soil does not dry out completely. Before you overwinter the plant, clean it by removing buds, flowers and soft shoot tips – even reducing the plant by one-third or more is possible.

Pruning

After removing the winter cover in the spring, cut back all frozen parts of the plant – possibly after a severe winter a pruning down to the ground must be done. Did the shoots survive the cold season well? (here is how to test this: when scratching the bark can you still see a lovely green colour? If so it does need such a radicle cut).

 

 

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