Potting.

Back in November I noticed fruits on Fuchsia glazioviana growing in the garden. This is a quite small grower with often good leaf colour so well worth growing. I wondered if it had picked up pollen from something interesting, so I picked a few fruits, extracted the seeds and sowed them. They germinated very quickly and I pricked them off into small cells, then potted them into 9cm pots around April. Today I potted them into 1 litre pots. They all look like Fuchsia glazioviana but there is a bit of variation in leaf colour and shape. I want to keep them all until they flower.

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Fuchsia glazioviana seedlings in 9cm pots.

 

The compost I used was Melcourt Sylvagrow with controlled release fertiliser (eg Osmocote) at 3kg/cu m. or 3g/litre if you prefer. This is roughly what a nursery would use. The compost as bought has an immediately available base feed in it that will keep a plant going for 6 weeks or so. The CRF will start to release nutrients but takes a while to get up to an adequate level for good growth. The Sylvagrow in the garden centre is exactly the same as I used on a commercial nursery for a wide range of nursery stock for many years. As such, it is perhaps the only truly professional product readily available to the general public, at least once a CRF is added.

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Being fuchsias, I potted them deep. You want to maximise the chance of below ground growth in the event of the top being killed by cold. Most plants would be potted at the same depth as they were already growing. I like to strip a few millimetres off the top of the rootball when potting on; it gets rid of weeds and weed seeds.

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F. glazioviana potted into 1 litre pots.

 

Most of our non-hardy Fuchsias have been in the same pots for at least three years and were looking very jaded this spring. I have been taking cuttings with the aim of growing new plants to replace the old. Some are so poor that getting good cuttings has proved difficult. I have been liquid feeding but for want of covered space, the plants are outdoors and we have had quite a bit of rain. The nutrients all get washed away and while replacing them by liquid feeding as soon as the rain stops is what I should have done, it’s not what I have done. I have top dressed the few that still haven’t yielded good cuttings with a CRF top dressing.

The varieties that I was able to propagate early on have, like the F. glazioviana, gone into 9cm, 1 litre and now 3 litre pots. They’re looking pretty good and the ones I’ve not pinched lately are budding up nicely.

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The “prop” house, with 3L Fuchsias on the right.

 

Most of the old plants have been put through the shredder and gone to the compost heap but some I have popped in to gaps left by early flowerers that have been chopped down, mostly Aquilegia.

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