Fuschia plants in bloom
image by Peter Clarke:commons.wikimedia.org
Fuchsias are tender perennial flowering shrubs that produce multiple dangling blooms on long arching stems. Blooming in summer and fall, tropical fuchsias are hardy in USDA zones 10 and 11 and can be overwintered in cooler climates indoors. Fuchsias bloom in hues of orange, pink, purple and coral, thriving in full sun to partial shade settings. Fuchsias are commonly grown in containers and hanging baskets to show off their form and blooms.
Select a planting location for fuchsias where they receive morning sun and afternoon shade. Grow in containers with good drainage in soil that is nutrient rich and well drained.
Choose a quality brand of commercial bagged potting mix with peat moss as a key element to help with moisture retention. Mulch with cocoa hulls, compost or shredded bark to enrich the soil naturally and prevent moisture loss.
Water your fuchsia regularly to maintain consistently moist soil around the roots throughout the growing season never allowing the soil to dry out completely. Dip hanging baskets into water to drench when the weather is very warm or conditions are dry. Hanging baskets tend to dry out rapidly and drench watering can cut down of the frequency of maintenance watering and reduce stress on the plant. In winter, scale back watering to maintain the soil as slightly moist.
Feed fuchsia plants beginning in the spring and each month thereafter with a water soluble general purpose fertilizer according to the manufacturer's guidance. Apply fertilizer over pre-watered soil to prevent burn and err on the side of under-fertilizing to prevent the buildup of mineral salts in the soil and leggy growth.
Prune away and damaged or diseased foliage and blooms as you see them. Always use clean sharp secateurs to prevent the spread of disease and deadhead fading blooms to encourage production of new flowers.