How to Grow Fuchsia as a Perennial

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Fuchsias are delicate flowering plants that produce vibrant blossoms in shades of pink, red and purple in the summer and early fall. A perennial is a plant that overwinters in the ground and comes back in the spring without needing transplantation. Many gardeners are familiar with fuchsias grown as annuals in baskets, but some varieties of fuchsia can survive through the winter in some climates if planted in the ground. To grow a fuchsia plant as a perennial, it is necessary to provide proper protection from frost during the colder months.

Select a site appropriate for growing the fuchsia year-round. The flower prefers warm weather and rainfall. Pick a spot that receives partial sunlight, preferably during the morning and late afternoon; midday sun may be too strong for the plant. Make sure the site offers protection from high winds during the colder months.

Remove all the weeds from the planting site with a hand spade, or pull them up by the roots with your hands. Plant your fuchsia after all threat of frost is past in the late spring.

Spread a 2-inch layer of organic compost over the site. Till it into the soil with a garden tiller to a depth of 6 inches.

Dig a hole in the tilled soil that is twice as wide as the fuchsia plant's container, and 5 inches deeper. Remove the fuchsia from the container by laying it on its side and loosening the soil from the container wall with a hand spade. Pull the plant out gently and lower it into the hole.

Backfill the hole with soil so the top of the root ball is at least 2 inches below the top of the soil. This extra soil will provide protection from the frost during the winter. There should now be a 3-inch depression around the rest of the plant; leave that depression there.

Water the soil in the depression until it settles. When cold weather begins to come, fill the depression with bark mulch to further protect the plant's roots from the winter weather.

Prune away old, woody stems with garden shears during the next spring. This encourages the plant to produce new branch growth, where blossoms occur.

Remove the flowers as they begin to fade -- known as "deadheading" -- during the next blooming season. Deadheading encourages the plant to continue producing flowers.

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