Hardy Fuchsias

FUCHSIA (HARDY)

Common name: none

Family: Onagraceae

In mild districts the hardy fuchsias often come through the winter unscathed, and can reach 2m (6ft) or more in height.

In others, the stems can be killed by frost. This is not normally a problem, however, as in the spring they invariably produce new growth from the base.

 

Popular species and varieties

fuchsia 2It is important to choose those that are regarded as hardy. One of the best known is F magellanica. The straight species is available, although many choose one of the named varieties. The flowers of this shrub are slender and freely produced in mid to late summer. Among those to look out for are F magellanica van gracillis (AGM), with small rosy purple flowers, and the hybrid ‘Madame Cornelissen’, with red and white blooms. Also well worth considering are the golden-leaved ‘Aurea’, the equally attractive variegated form ‘Variegata’ (AGM), and ‘Versicolor’ (AGM), its leaves edged with white and cream.

There are numerous hybrids suitable for the garden. ‘Lady Thumb’ (AGM) has semi-double flowers with pink sepals and white petals, and grows to just 45cm (18in). Even smaller is ‘Tom Thumb’ (AGM) with red and violet blooms on sturdy plants just over 35cm (14in) high. An old stager, still as popular as even is ‘Mrs Popple’ (AGM), vigorous with red and purple flowers.

 

Cultivation

Soil type Most humus-rich, moist, well-drained soils.

Planting Best carried out in the spring, as rising soil temperatures will help plants to establish quickly. They can be grown in sun or light shade.

Maintenance Apart from those growing in mild districts, the stems should be cut back to just above ground level, in early spring. Deeply mulch around the bases of the plants with peat, or other suitable material, in the autumn.

Propagation Softwood cuttings of around 7cm (3in) in length can be taken in early summer

Pests and diseases The hardy fuchsias are generally trouble free. Aphids can be a problem on new growth; spray with insecticide as soon as seen.

19. May 2011 by Dave Pinkney
Categories: Ornamental Shrubs | Tags: | Comments Off on Hardy Fuchsias

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