When/How are you most successful at propigating fuchsias?

(Julie)South Prairie, WA(Zone 7a)

OK Melody, I won't wait for the popular crowd to jump out on the dance floor....I will be brave and get things started myself.

I love my hardy fuchsias and would love to hear peoples suggestions on the best ways to propigate them. I find that in our area, now is the perfect time to try cuttings, but I am definitely a novice as far as fuchsias go. When do you propigate? How do you do it? I am sure that lots of us would love to know.

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(Sharon)SouthPrairie, WA(Zone 7a)

Yes, Melody, thank you for this forum.
Here in the PNW it is definitely prime time for fuschia pictures, propagation, and discussions. We are fortunate to have a climate that is good for both potted and hardy plants.

It is now getting cool here, with temps in the 70's and nite temps in the 50's. Fuschias love it. Liz, I think you are hotter, I think I would wait a bit, though I haven't had experience elsewhere with fuschias.

Emerald Hills, CA(Zone 9b)

I think someone talked about the proper method to propagate fuschia's in the old thread (that requested the forum), but I would love it if someone would repeat or bring that info. over here. I know that I've never had luck starting them in water, but I recently stuck several pieces in the dirt in the pot, where my fuschia was growing , & one of the pieces appears to have rooted!

Liz

Saint Louis, MO(Zone 6a)

Here's a link to one of the threads mentioned in the Discussion Forum on propagating F. Gartenmeister. Should work for other fuchsia varities, I would think. I'm going to try it.

http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/t/1028348/

This message was edited Sep 2, 2009 4:53 PM

Emerald Hills, CA(Zone 9b)

Thanks hummer_girl. That's exactly the discussion I was thinking of... as I thought it mentioned it mentioned spring as the best season to propagate.

Saint Louis, MO(Zone 6a)

I've sent Melody a list of the fuchsia threads we all listed in the Discussion Forum, so she can switch info into our new forum.

Union, WA(Zone 8b)

I always just stick my fuchsia cutting in the ground in the fall. Always do more than you want and most will survive. I don't use rooting hormone, just clip off the leaves and make sure the soil is firmed-up around the cutting. THis is for hardies.

Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

I am going to be making cuttings. So I will take some photos of them as examples of what I consider a good cutting to look like. And I'll write a bit about why I like or dislike which ones.
Sometimes, if I am in a big hurry and accidently break a branch off of a plant, I do the same thing as Willowwind2, with just my hands (if I am not holding clippers, ha, ha) I removed all of the leaves except for a couple at the end, then I jam it as far down into the soil of pot as I can. If there is a stick nearby, I'll use that to make the hole instead, to lessen the damage to the branch when it gets shoved into the soil.
Most of the time, these survive and add to the bush.
Occasionally, I will strip the broken piece, leaving a couple of leaves at the end, and bury it lengthwise just below the surface. But only if I am going to be watering right away and if the weather is going to be cool and/or foggy for a couple of days. When these survive, they put out new growth all along the length of the buried branch. I especially do this with new varieties that haven't grown into big bushes yet.

Union, WA(Zone 8b)

That's good to know about the lengthwise cutting. I also do some very nicely in pots.^_^

Saint Louis, MO(Zone 6a)

P.C.: niffty trick burying the cutting length ways. Thanks!

Union, WA(Zone 8b)

PC, The fuchsia plants I am going to send you have bloosoms on them. And they are just a year old. Stuck in the ground last year. They are also about eight inches high.

Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

Cool! I am glad you are feeling up to it now :-)
Let me know if I have anything you'd like!

Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

For some stupid reason, the first time I try and send anything with a photo attached, my computer hangs up on me. So, I am going to send the photos first, then write about them. I don't want to have to write it all again!
Here are cuttings 1 and 2

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Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

3 and 4

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Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

5, 6 and 7

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Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

Okay! Now, fyi, everywhere a leaf connects with a stem on a plant, there are embroyonic stem cells call Apical Meristem. These cells can become anything the plant needs. And it is why, for most plants, it is very important to have at least one node in contact with the soil or buried in the soil.
I won't be tossing out any of the cuttings shown, because sometimes you have to go with what you got and just hope they all make it. But some are better than others and here is why.
1. This cutting has too much stem below the bottom node and if it rots, it will take the whole cutting down.
2. This cutting is perfect. Not too much foliage left to support with no root system, there are two nodes instead of just one to go below the surface, and the distance between the nodes is not too long. If there were any flowers or flower buds, they were removed.

This message was edited Sep 11, 2009 12:17 PM

Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

3. This one is iffy. Yes, there is all of that bare stem below the node that could rot, but this time the stem is needed for stability. And I needed this cutting, so I didn't want to chance destroying it by trying to seperate them into two cuttings. One of which would have been far too small.
4. This is a classic cutting. Two nodes. One with foliage, one for the new roots. It will also produce two new shoots instead of just the one for cutting number 2. But cutting number two is way ahead in terms of the number of apical meristem cells turned on and going for growth at the tip it already has going!

Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

5. This looks like a great cutting. And if it survives, it will make a great plant. But it is a bit too big and has too much to support with no root system. So I am going to be sure to bury it deep.
6. This one is very weak. The stem is very thin. But it could make it.
7. This one is way too small. Again, it could make it. But it is going to take longer for it to become a plant than a better cutting would.

I hope this helps! ;-) And good luck!
PC

Emerald Hills, CA(Zone 9b)

PedricksCorner,

Thanks for the illustrated lesson - great info.!

Liz

(Sharon)SouthPrairie, WA(Zone 7a)

Yes, thank you, PC. Do you also have thoughts about timing?

Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

Now!
Ha, ha! It is still warm enough for them to get rooted and grow just a bit and then be tucked in for the winter. They might be too small to survive the winter outdoors in areas like your PNW, but I hear they can be grown indoors and I am going to try it this winter for the first time!
Getting them started now is going to give you a huge jump on next spring.
The only thing I'd have to ad about keeping them indoors for the winter is to make certain rooted and growing plants get at least two hours of direct winter sun from a window.

(Sharon)SouthPrairie, WA(Zone 7a)

I keep the sensative ones in the greenhouse for the winter. But....they do seem to be whitefly magnets there. What to do?

Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

I've rarely had a problem with whiteflies. Sometimes the maggot of a little gnat gets intot the soil indoors and I see them when I occasionally pour liquid fertilizer over the bark in my dendrobiums. Then I see them floating in the liquid down in the pepples of the trays. But that is usually just because of the constantly moist soil. I don't believe those do any damage and are just eating dead plant material like our friends the earthworms do. U have never seen anykind of damage from them.
Have you actually seen White flies, not just gnats? Because there is a tape they are attracted to that you can use. Or SaferSoap spray. But you must be careful to really soak underneath the leaves where they like to hang out and lay their eggs.
I hope you don't have White Flies!

Saint Louis, MO(Zone 6a)

P.C.: great demo. Do you use root hormone? Can't remember if you said whether you do, or not. I think Willowwind2 said she didn't.

Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

Nope, haven't used it in over 25 years! But, that doesn't mean it wouldn't be useful for plants that are difficult to root because they just are naturally slow growers and tend to rot before they can put out roots. Usually woody perennials such as herbs and other plants that are drought tolerant types. I just compensate by making more cuttings than I need from those plants. Fuchsias though, shouldn't need it.

Union, WA(Zone 8b)

If you use root hormone you should dip it and tap most of it off. Too much is bad for the plant. I don't use it because I don't care to have a bunch of new plants. I just stick in a few cutting once in a while to see what they do. Usually hydreangea and fuchsia because they are easy.

(Linda)Gig Harbor, WA(Zone 8a)

PC= Thankyou for the lesson.....I have gained a new passion for hardy fuschias and I finding my self ripping out plants to make room for more. This is Fuchsia exoniensis.

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Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

Wow, that is a really cool fuchsia!
I hear that the species are getting very popular, but I had no idea they could be that colorful!
I wonder what the berries taste like.
One of my most recent purchases is a Fuchsia boliviana which is not the alba and according to the Northwest Fuchsia Society it is mislabeled as Fuchsia corymbiflora. They say that according to Berry (the bottom line in the fuchsia world) that name is not to be used any more. I also have the alba form. But it is the fruit from this one, with the long red flowers, that they actually sell in the fruit markets of Brazil. It is supposed to have a dried fig like flavor. I can't wait for it to get bigger and produce!
Ha, ha, someday, we can have a big RU here and we can all do a fuchsia berry tasting party! What cheese goes with that berry!?

This message was edited Sep 12, 2009 10:40 AM

(Linda)Gig Harbor, WA(Zone 8a)

I guess we would have a do a cheese/wine testing and get a new culunary perspective going! LOL

Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

Hmm, I know they dry the berries and I know they have been made into jams, now you have me wondering what a fuchsia berry liquor or wine would taste like ;-D

Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

Here is an example of how resiliant fuchsias can be. These fuchsia cuttings arrived completely wilted, despite the best efforts of the person who sent them.
If I didn't know better, I'd of assumed they were "toast."
This photo was after I had them totally imersed in cool water for about an hour.
Then to speed their absorbtion of water, I cut each branch in half.

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Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

This is about three hours later.
Remarkable difference, eh?
They have been made into cuttings and this Wednesday, the cuttings will be a week old. I will take of photo of them then and post it here. Then I will try to document their continued progress.

This message was edited Sep 27, 2009 11:43 AM

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Palm Bay, FL(Zone 9b)

Wow what a difference !

Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

As promised, here are the cuttings one week later, they are the ones in the two bottom rows of the photo. Progress reports will follow! Which reminds me, I should also take another photo of the Gartenmeister cuttings. Actually, since they are growing so well, I guess I can call them plants now ;-)

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Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

Ahh, wrong photo! Ha, ha, they will let you edit your post, but not the photo!

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Portland, OR(Zone 8a)

Pedrick
Thanks for posting the Flash cuttings and the progress!
It amazing how quickly they revived from the shipping. I really didn't think they would wilt so badly because I cut them then placed them in water for an hour before packing them up. Even spritzed them with water before rolling them in the newpaper.

They sure look like they are doing good in the last photo! Hope you will have plenty to grace your beautiful Fuchsia Garden.

Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

I'll send another photo next week. Let's see if you guys can tell when they have made the transition from cuttings to rooted plants that have begun to grow.
I don't have a greenhouse (yet!) so I use the cool ground on the north side of the house. I keep them covered with a breathable "seed" cloth and there is a timer attached to the faucet with a misting nozzle on the end of a hose that goes off every two hours. I just turn the water off in the evening to keep it from misting them at night. Especially now that it is getting cooler.
As the danger now is more from mold and fungus than from drying out. It is also the time of year when I can hope for 100% survival rate if I am careful and monitor them.
One important aspect of making cuttings one needs to bear in mind, is that not only do different types of plant root at different rates, even different varieties of the same species can have radically different growth rates. This is absolutely true of fuchsia varieties.
Grace McCarthy, Walz Bella, and a mystery fuchsia is in the same tray with Flash. It will be interesting to see who roots first!

Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

Here we are one week later! Everyone is doing okay. Lost a few leaves. That is to be expected. And it is VERY important to check once a day for dropped leaves because they will rot and spread mold and fungus all around them!!
So these are two week old cuttings now.

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Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

Well, I built spiffy new digs for cuttings and seedlings. And so far, everyone seems to like it in there. With todays high winds and torential rains, I was really afraid my little "greenhouse" would blow away!! But nothing even flapped around :-)
Must be all the clamps I put all over it. All of the fuchsia bushes were getting tossed pretty good though. I almost got a shot of a hummingbird trying to hang onto a branch of F. magellanica, but then that twig broke and I don't know where he relocated to. We had over 4 inches of rain so far in the last 24 hours and it isn't over yet.
So if the weather permits, tomorrow I will take that weekly photo of the tray of cuttings to show how they are doing.
I am hoping to be able to trap some of the heat that escapes from the window above. Later on, I am going to extend the plastic to up above it.

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Freedom, CA(Zone 9b)

Three weeks and doing okay! There were a couple of casualties, but that is to be expected. It is very rare to get 100%. I've probably already mentioned this, but different fuchsias ( just as all plants) grow at different rates. The ones that grow the fastest have the highest survival rate. Grace McCarthy is in the back of the tray and just trucking along fine! I am not using my breathable seed cloth on them anymore, as they are in my mini-greenhouse now. There is better air circulation. Which is both good and bad. Good because the fungi don't like it, bad because the newer cuttings can handle it. So the really new ones, will still get covered.

Thumbnail by PedricksCorner

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