Fuchsia Cuttings – How To Propagate Fuchsia Plants
Propagating fuchsias from cuttings is extremely easy, as they root rather quickly.
How to Propagate Fuchsia Cuttings
Fuchsia cuttings can be taken anytime from spring through fall, with spring being the most ideal time. Cut or pinch out a young growing tip, about 2 to 4 inches (5-10 cm.) in length, just above the second or third pair of leaves. Remove any bottom leaves and, if desired, you can apply rooting hormone, though it’s not an absolute. You can then insert three or four cuttings in a 3-inch (7.5 cm.) pot or numerous cuttings in a planting tray, into a moist growing medium like sand, perlite, vermiculite,
peat moss, or sterilized soil. It may help to make a hole in the growing medium with your finger or a pencil beforehand for easier insertion of the cuttings.
The cuttings can then be covered with ventilated plastic to retain moisture and humidity, but this too is not absolute. However, it does speed up the rooting process. Place the cuttings in a warm location, such as a window sill or greenhouse.
Within three to four weeks (or less), the cuttings should begin establishing good roots. Once these roots start, you can remove the plastic covering during the day to acclimate the young plants. When they have started growing well, the rooted cuttings can be removed and repotted as needed.
In addition to placing cuttings in soil or another growing medium, you can also root them in a glass of water. Once the cuttings produce some well-established roots, they can be repotted in soil.
Growing Fuchsia Plants
Growing fuchsias from cuttings is easy. Once your cuttings have been repotted, you can continue growing fuchsia plants using the same conditions and care as the original plant. Put your new plants in the garden or a hanging basket in partially shaded area, or semi-sun.
Propagating Fuchsias from Cuttings
Fuchsias are one of the easiest of all plants to take cuttings from and will root very easily under the correct conditions. Cuttings can be taken as softwood cuttings in spring or semi-hardwood cuttings in summer or early autumn. Cuttings taken in spring will root in 2-3 weeks and flower by the summer. Cuttings taken in summer or autumn will need protection over winter.
To take fuchsia cuttings you will need a sharp knife or secateurs, a clean pot or seed tray of free draining compost (made with one part sharp sand or grit and two parts potting compost) a dibber and a small planting widger/fork.
A heated propagator is ideal for rooting cuttings quickly but if you don’t have one you can still root the cuttings very successfully by placing a plastic cover or clear plastic bag over the cuttings to retain moisture and humidity.
The general method for taking ‘Fuchsia’ cuttings is as follows:
- Choose a healthy donor plant with fresh shoots at least 8 cm (3 in) long.
- Take an 8 cm cutting just below a leaf joint of a non-flowering shoot.
Note: Fuchsia cuttings can wilt very quickly so if your not rooting them straight, away keep them in a sealed plastic bag or dip the ends in a glass of water until you are ready.
- Place on a flat surface and cut away the lower leaves with a sharp knife.
- Dust the base of the cutting in rooting hormone or rooting gel/liquid.
- Pot them in a free draining gritty compost mix. Inserting them about 3-6 cm (1-2 in) apart so the leaves are not touching.
- Water well and place the cuttings in a propagator or cover with clear plastic to retain high humidity.
- Place in a well lit position but not in direct sunlight and keep moist.
- Keep them at a temperature above 18°C (65°F) to ensure rooting.
- After 2/3 weeks once roots start to form, open the propagator vents and gradually remove the lid until the plants become acclimatised.
- Once a good root system has developed prick out the new plantlets into individual small pots, in general potting compost.
- Feed with liquid tomato feed to encourage flowering shoots.
- Harden-off and plant out once all danger of frost has passed in May.
- Once the plants have grown three or four leave joints, pinch out the tips to encourage bushy growth.
Note: If the tips are long enough you can use these to form more cuttings!
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How to Propagate Fuchsias
Recently I had one of those “could have had a V8 moments.” I realized I could keep my fuchsia plants alive over the winter, and propagate fuchsias from cuttings to grow more in the spring. Although winter may cause the plants to go a bit dormant and lose the beautiful profusion of flowers, they’ll come back in the spring!
Fuchsia from photographer “anaxila” via Flickr
It all started with a hanging fuchsia fetish—and a bit of a tragedy. You see every year, I buy at least one hanging plant to spruce up my garage. Generally all is well, but two summers ago, my vacation plant waterer completely missed my fuchsia. By the time I got home, it was a mass of dried sticks. Sadly I set it aside, since it was too late to replace.
It was quickly forgotten until fall when… (insert mysterious music) something strange began to happen. New shoots started popping up all over the plant. Clearly this Fuchsia had a will to live, coming back from the dead on scattered rainfall!
I brought it back into the house and resumed watering. It grew slowly over winter, but by spring was almost lush. When summer came it began to flower, so I put it back out on the garage. I’ve kept it ever since.
Enter innovation number two. If you take cuttings from your plant, it is super easy to make new plants. Just follow the steps below.
Avoid the woody stems for rooting
Take cuttings. Cut (relatively) new growth about fives inches long and strip the leaves off the lower couple inches. Be sure to use sections that haven’t gotten woody–as a fuchsia ages, the stems turn hard and brown and those stems wouldn’t root.
Propagate fuchsias by rooting cuttings in water
Place the cuttings in a container of water. The leaves should be above the water line, with the stripped stem below. Contrary to a lot of the advice on the internet, you don’t need to use rooting hormone (that is covered in warnings about toxicity). Plain water works beautifully.
Root growth on fuchsia cuttings
Wait about three weeks. Check for root growth periodically. Monitor the water level and replace as needed.
How to propagate fuchsias
Plant. When you have a good inch or so of root growth you can plant the cuttings. Just bury the stem section below the leaves in potting soil and keep it moist. Five cuttings will fill a pot nicely (once it fills out).
Just a few other tips. Rather than keep a pot of grizzled old fuchsias forever, you may wish to periodically replace your pot with new cuttings. After a while, the plants become woody and stiff and don’t drape quite as well over the edges of the pots.
Remember that these are shade plants. I felt guilty for “scalping” my original plant and put it out on the back porch to rejuvenate. Pretty soon it had a case of sunburn, in addition to a bad haircut. Luckily it survived; we have established that it is tough. But… oops.
Besides being a great frugal measure, making your own new plants is very green. No trucking plants across the country, you can reuse containers and use homemade compost instead of commercial potting soil. And you can beautify your summer for free!
Happy Earth Day!
It’s so nice to share… Tagged on: Earth Day, frugal living, fuchsias, hanging plants
Pruning and Propagation of Fuchsias
In order to properly care for your Fuchsia plants, you need to know when to prune them. Pruning is extremely important for shrubs, including Fuchsias. Another vital thing you need to know is how to propagate your Fuchsia plants.
These two tasks are important for both the outdoor and indoor Fuchsias. It is vital to know how to do pruning and propagating of your garden Fuchsia plants. Potted Fuchsias also require this care, particularly when it comes to propagation with the purpose of repotting your plants. Some people choose to grow potted Fuchsias outdoors while others keep their plants indoors. All of these scenarios require you to know how to do pruning and propagation.
How to Prune Fuchsia Plants
Fuchsias are evergreen shrubs but they still greatly benefit from pruning. It is also best to defoliate the plant during the pruning time so it can grow stronger and healthier.
One thing you need to understand about Fuchsia plants is that they can tolerate vigorous pruning. It means that you can cut a lot of it without consequences. Most of the time, you can cut it to the ground if necessary. However, this much pruning is generally not practiced unless there is an emergency. It is not the best idea to cut to the ground delicate varieties through these can, too, withstand so much pruning if necessary.
The best way to prune your Fuchsias is to simply remove as much of the plant as you expect to be replaced in the following year. This will ensure that your plant stays the same size year after year. You might not be sure how much to prune the first time, but don’t worry: like noted above, Fuchsias can withstand vigorous pruning so chances are that you will not make a disastrous mistake. The following year, monitor your plant’s growth to know how much to cut in the fall during the next pruning.
The only exception to this general pruning rule are young Fuchsia plants. These plants are smaller than their adult size so they cannot go through too much pruning. You should prune young plants lightly.
Pruning should be done in the fall. When pruning, make sure to remove all small, spindly wood. Leave a framework of heavy branches on the plant. This will allow your Fuchsias to thrive in the following year.
There are many indications that pruning improves the health and strength of your Fuchsias. Many people claim that garden Fuchsias improve with age. It is not uncommon to find Fuchsia plants that are 25 years old. This is why regular, annual pruning is important for your plants.
There is good news for those who wish to propagate their Fuchsias: these are among the easiest plants you can grow from cuttings. It means that you can perform propagation easily and without much problem. Unlike some other plants, taking cuttings and propagating them is an easy task even for beginner gardeners.
The best and quickest way to propagate your Fuchsia plants is through cuttings. What seems to work particularly well is to use early spring or summer shoots before the plant develops flower buds. These shoots are sappy and easy to take from the plant.
When choosing shoots to make cuttings, seek soft, green branches that are about 2 to 4 inches long. Pick those that have not had any foliage removed in the previous year. Cut the branches to get your cuttings for propagation.
Prepare moist sand in a well-drained box to plant your cuttings. Insert them about half an inch deep into the sand. You can cover the box with a pane of glass. Keep the box in a well-lighted but shady place. Water the cuttings often enough to keep the sand moist. You need to prevent cuttings from wilting to be successful with propagation.
The roots should start to appear in 2 to 3 weeks of this care. This is when your cuttings are ready to be transplanted. It is best to transplant them into small pots filled with light soil. Plant them carefully so you don’t hurt the delicate plants.
Keep your new Fuchsia plants sheltered and in a shaded area for about 10 days or so. This time is crucial because there is still danger of wilting. After this, your new plants should be strong enough and the anger of wilting has passed so you can consider propagation a success.
One thing to note: the earlier you make your cuttings, the larger the plants will be when it’s time to winter them over for the following year. Keep this in mind when deciding to propagate your Fuchsias. If you want to be successful, it is best to do propagation of your Fuchsia plants as soon as you can.
Photo credit: Gertrud K. Fuchsie via photopin (license)