I have some annual fuschias that are still blooming, but I will need to cut them back soon for the winter (I say they are annual because sometimes they are, but I left mine out last winter and 5 out of 7 came back). Can I make starts from the cuttings this time of year? If so, what do I need to do? Dip in rooting hormone and then pot up? What type of soil should I use? Do they need light and warmth? I'm really new at propagating so I would really appreciate any help.
Fill your pot with compost and set in water to moisten the compost. Try not to use compost with a lot of fertiliser in, if you only have multi purpose then mix it 50/50 with sand or grit or vermiculite or perlite to open the compost up and reduce the amount of fertiliser the cutting will come into contact with.
Choose a growing shoot with no flower buds, this can be quite hard this time of year so if a good shoot has buds on, snip them off.
Count down the shoot to the third pair of leaves and make a cut just above the 4th set (so the 4th pair is still on the plant). Always use a very sharp knife to avoid crushing the stems.
Now take the knife/scissors and snip the stem off just below the third pair of leaves and remove that 3rd set of leaves too.
Make a hole in the compost and pop the cutting in to just below the leaves but ensuring the leaves aren't touching the compost.
They need bottom heat at this time of year, if you can't provide that with present equipment, a fridge is fine (the top is usually warm) as long as it's in a light, airy position. If you can't provide that, a makeshift propagator, i.e. a large pop bottle with the bottom cut off and placed over the pot will suffice.
Keep the cuttings at around 65-68F and they should all be rooted by 21 days after planting.
If you use the pop bottle propagator, they will need to be weaned out so don't suddenly expose the cuttings to air, if you can keep temperatures of 68F, they they won't need the bottle.
I don't use rooting hormone on cuttings, Fuchsia don't really need it in my experience but it's up to you.
Thanks for the info, I think the frost may have already gotten to them and I didn't have time to cut them over the weekend. I'll see how they look when I get home tonight! Maybe I can still salvage some cuttings.
Kate, my 'annual' fuschia I planted nearly 8 years ago are still going strong. I don't prune them back till very late Winter/early Spring...they seem to get bigger and healthier every year.
Not sure about cuttings, as I have never tried that...sounds like Baa has given you very good info however.
I have started a lot of fuchsias with the cutting method and had good success. But never at this time of year. But this year when I cut my plants back for the winter I tried to start some for a couple of the DGers here and the plants just sat there. Not rooting, not dying, nothing. I have never had a plant do that to me before.
I think those plants just knew it was time to go to bed. Jeanette
I live in So. calif. where you can't frow Fushia, ha ha
I always take my cutting in the spring just before the leaves start to unfold. March 1 may be a good time for us. I just break off a sturdy stem about the size of a straw and just stick in the soil next to my plant.
That is a humus rich soil, with lots of Redwood bark that has decayed. Crasulady2