Interested in fuchsias as a garden flower? here is the best way to buy fuchsias…
Fuchsias grow well in humus-rich, well drained soils which are perfectly aerated. If your Fuchsia is going to thrive in your garden or patio it is imperative that you try as much as possible to simulate these natural wild conditions.
Fuchsias thrive in the following positions:
- East facing balconies and patios they receive adequate sunlight in the morning
- Positions facing south-west or north receive sunshine in the afternoon or evening
- Gardens facing south and are not in direct sunlight all day
- Flower beds on the east or west side of the house
- Shady positions
Fuchsias do not grow well in positions that are too dark and will produce very few flowers in these sites. Avoid them at all time. Positions that are unsuitable will encourage disease and pests these results in little foliage. Hot positions with dry still air, patios or balconies that receive strong wind and non ventilated rooms are all bad positions for the Fuchsia and must be avoided.
How to improve sites
Sites that offer unfavourable conditions for Fuchsia growth can be adjusted quiet easily.
Positions in the wind
Fuchsias dislike draught and prefer airy surroundings. Strong wind results in the shoots of the young fuchsia breaking off and thus destroying the fuchsia. A wind breaker can be erected to prevent strong wind from harming the plant. You can use:
- Opaque matting or porous cladding
- Trellises or open fencing covered by climbing plants for a unique design
- Neighbouring plants or bushes break the force of the gusts of the wind
try and plant the fuchsia between broad evergreen plants of different heights to protect the fuchsia from draught in a flower bed. Bushes, shrubs and other plants will protect the fuchsia well.
Fuchsias grow well in shaded positions and will not produce foliage in direct sunlight. Provide shade for the fuchsia by using trellises with bushy climbing plants or creepers, synthetic shading mats for fuchsia in greenhouses and UV protection screens or Venetian blinds for those in a conservatory.
During the summer the air is very dry and not adequate for fuchsia growth. The microclimate surrounding the fuchsia can be improved by:
- Spraying with water daily in the morning and evening (not during the daytime where there is direct sunlight)
- Installing a humidity-dispensing source near the fuchsia such as a fountain, a small pool or water basin.
- Planting plants close to the fuchsia, which have huge leaves which emit a lot of water into the air through evaporation.
- Planting low-growing plants that will result in the soil not drying out.
- Using a 5 cm layer of mulch of grass cuttings, rotting compost or bark to prevent the soil from drying out
TIP: Plant low-level lobelia beneath the fuchsia in the mid-spring. The thick overhanging blue carpet produced by the lobelia will act as a soil moist retainer. It also looks beautiful.
Improving humidity in the greenhouse
Use a water spray in the mornings to create a mist around the plants then allow fresh air to blow through. By so doing you supply humidity and cold air which encourages evaporation in the greenhouse.
It is good practice to spray young fuchsia plants daily. You can also stand shallow dishes of water in between the fuchsia pots or stand the plant pots on a dish with moist sand or Hortag.
Indoor plants lose water slower than outdoor plants. Make sure that leaves dry up before the evening .
How to select fuchsias for particular planting sites…
You can tell what position a particular fuchsia prefers by the way that it looks. Fuchsias which have large surfaces are normally very soft. Fuchsias which have large and numerous petals should be kept in a shady position. White-flowering varieties normally discolour when they are subjected to too much sunlight.
Fuchsias for the patio or balcony
- Upright varieties which grow quickly look wonderful when planted in large containers. These include Happy, Lady Thumb and Larissa.
- Fuchsias that produce numerous shoots grow compactly and tend to stay low. They should be planted in wide tubs and containers.
- Fuchsias which have hanging branches should be propagated in secure hanging baskets for example Elfriede Ott and Harry Gray.
Elegantly trailing types with soft shoots are ideal for tubs, free-standing urns pedestals and small hanging baskets.
Fuchsias for the garden
There are a wide range of varieties of fuchsia suitable for the garden. Combining standard and bush fuchsia results in the creation of diverse plant structures that look marvellous. Fuchsias can be combined with summer flowers and shrubs and can be planted in front of trees. Due to their shapes and multi-coloured flowers, fuchsias tend to dominate the scenario.
Plants in shades of green create a suitable background. Summer flowers in shades of pink, blue and white will blend well with the colours of the fuchsia flowers.
Hardy bush fuchsias fit in well among shrubs or rows of trees. They cope with a lot of sun as long as the roots are kept moist. Hardy fuchsia begin flowering in mid-summer till the beginning of frost. In the winter the parts of the fuchsia above the ground die and the roots will produce new shoots when spring comes. These fuchsia reach heights of up to 1,5m in warm, sunny positions.
Hardy fuchsias should be planted 5cm deeper than other fuchsia varieties and need to be protected from frost.
The conditions in the house are normally different than those outside and are far from ideal conditions needed by the fuchsia to grow well. Fuchsia indoor seem to have a shorter lifespan when compared to those growing outside. This is due to the fact that there is less fresh air in the home; there are lower temperatures at night and very low humidity levels.
Where to buy fuchsias
Nowadays one can obtain fuchsias from a wide range of sources. There are many fuchsia raisers and gardeners who formed clubs and societies to acquire new fuchsia varieties. Flower shops normally stock bedding plants and varieties for patios and balconies.
Nurseries normally have varieties of function at different stages of growth. You can get advice from nursery staff regarding how best to care and grow the fuchsia.
Garden centers offer large quantities of plants and at cheaper prices than flower shops. It is rare to find botanical rarities in garden centers. There are also numerous plant containers, soils and potting composts, plant protection agents and useful reading information.
If you are purchasing a limited choice of fuchsia you can use mail order companies which provide unusual varieties. You can also purchase fuchsia at regional shows were private collectors showcase their plants.
Points to consider when purchasing fuchsias
Always select fuchsias that have vibrant colours and shiny, perfect leaves which are not spaced out too far apart. Watch for spotty leaves as they spell out fungal infection here!
The undersides of the leaves must be free of pests such as white fly. The roots of the plant must be firm and white.