container gardens
The Splendid Fuchsias

   The next year, take plants out of containers in early spring, cut back the tops and some of the roots and repot in fresh soil in the same container. Drastically cutting back branches in the spring, before growth commences, will make plants branch well.

Increasing Your Supply

   When you want to increase your collection, take three-inch cuttings from the tender spring growth, dip the ends in a hormone powder and insert the lower inch of each stem in a mixture of half leafmold and half sand. Protect the cuttings from sun and either spray them lightly from time to time or cover with polyethylene plastic to prevent their drying out. When roots have formed, transfer the plants to small pots in a mixture of light loam and leafmold. Cuttings can also be taken in late summer or early fall for small plants that are easier to winter.

   Voracious in their needs, fuchsias require regular feeding through the growing season. Give liquid fertilizer once a month, following directions on the package. Fish emulsion, applied monthly, will give especially good results.

   During the winter, store plants at 45 to 50 degrees to keep them dormant. Water sparingly, just enough to prevent wood from shriveling. Outdoors, hardy fuchsias will survive to 25 degrees, but where hardiness is questionable, it is safer to winter plants in a greenhouse, cool room, shed, or in a coldframe. During this period, cover the roots with a layer of peatmoss.

   Insects likely to attack fuchsias include aphids, red spiders, white flies, thrips, mealy bugs, and leaf hoppers. Malathion, lindane, or DDT applied regularly, especially before an infestation is heavy, will keep these enemies under control.