Fuchsia is a genus of flowering plants that contains almost 100 species and 7000 varieties. Native to the Dominican Republic’s Santa Domingo mountains, fuchsias bloom in dainty, drooping flowers in most colors and in single or double blooms. Some fuchsia varieties grow as upright shrubs, others as trailing plants. The trailers are popular with home gardeners who grow them in pots and hanging baskets. Grow your fuchsia in an area that receives filtered sunshine.
Combine equal parts of cactus soil and potting mix. Water it until it is uniformly moist, and allow it to drain completely.
Pour the mixture into the planter until it is half full. Remove the fuchsia from its nursery pot, and place it in the new planter. You may need to add or remove soil so that the fuchsia is planted at the same depth as it has been growing. Fill the pot with soil to within 1/2 inch of the rim.
Water the fuchsia until water drains from the bottom of the planter. Keep the soil moist, but never wet. On hot, dry days you may need to water daily.
Feed the fuchsia, for the first time, four weeks after planting. Use 5-10-10 fertilizer, at the rate suggested on the label, every week during the flowering season. In early spring, when the fuchsia puts out new growth, switch to a 20-20-20 formula, at the rate specified on the label. Use this formula weekly throughout the spring and summer and switch back to the 5-10-10 formula when the fuchsia begins to flower heavily. Discontinue feeding the plant in mid-August.
Pinch off dead flowers during the blooming season.
Prune the fuchsia in late fall. Cut the plant back to within 4 to 8 inches of the soil level. Fuchsia blooms on new wood, so pruning is a vital component of its care.
Winterize the fuchsia by covering it in peat moss or wrapping it in protective fabric. Place it in a shady area where it will not be subjected to frost. Water sparingly when the fuchsia is dormant over the winter. Don’t allow the soil to dry out completely. In the spring, place it back in its permanent location, and resume normal care.