Cape fuchsias are invaluable plants for warmer climates, where they stay evergreen and can bloom all summer. The flowers, which come in shades of yellow ("Moonraker"), red ("Winchester Fanfare") and coral-red ("African Queen"), are long, thin tubes. They appear all up and down the flower stalk and are attractive to hummingbirds.
Find cape fuchsias in nurseries starting in summer, though they may be available year-round in mild climates. Look for them in 6-inch or gallon-size containers.
Buy in summer when they're blooming if you want to pick out a particular shade.
Look for healthy plants that are putting on new growth.
Plant in a sunny spot in the garden in well-drained soil.
Dig a hole big enough to accommodate the size of the root structure.
Add some organic fertilizer to the planting hole.
Use a hand cultivator - a tool that looks like a claw - to break up the roots if they're pot-bound. Dig it into the root ball and loosen it all up. The plant will grow new roots more easily this way.
Water weekly throughout the first summer.
Water the new plant all through its first year, until well-established.
Cut back a finished flower stalk, using bypass pruners, to just above a set of leaves that show new growth.
Cut back the old stems to just above a leaf joint - where you can see new growth starting - in early spring. Leave stems that are 6 to 8 inches long.
Things you need
- Bypass Pruners
- Compost Makers
- Garden Hoses
- Hand Cultivators
- Transplant Spades