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Fuchsia Gall Mite

Emerald Hills, CA(Zone 9b)


I've been growing upright fuchsia's for about 3 years, and last summer one of them started having gall mite issues. After using Sevin (probably not as frequently as I should have) & cutting the fuchsia down to a nub, I started using Bayer products this year. The granules did nothing, but the liquid Bayer 2 in 1 seemed to keep things in check this summer. However, this week, I notice the gall mites have attacked with a vengance. Instead of one plant being affected, I now have 4 with substantial gall mite issues. I bought the Bayer Tree & Shrub 12 month & planned to try that next.

However, I'm now wondering if 1) I'm fighting a losing battle and 2) if location has a lot to do with the success or failure of controlling this pest. A dozen fucshia's are all in one area & they're succumbing quickly; however, a Netalla, which is about 20 feet away has never had any problems (knock on wood).

I have quite a few hummingbirds, which I love, and lots of bees (my across the street neighbor has hives), and I hate to use pesticides which could compromise the bees & other beneficial insects.

I know the hummingbirds spread the gall mite & wonder if having many fuchsia's in the same place makes it easier for the hummers to spread the pest. If segregating the fucshias may be helpful, I'll do so... Otherwise, I will probably pare down my collection to just a few, because I just don't have the time or desire to constantly fight these critters & use more & more strong pesticides.

I'd appreciate any feedback that people may have.

Many thanks,


Gold Beach, OR(Zone 9a)

Hi Liz,
I am no expert on fuchsia mite but i do think that netalla is one of the ones that has resistance. There are many that are resistant, most of the ones that are tend to have single blooms that are long, like fanfare. I have noticed that most of the doubles and shorter blooms are more suspect to the mite. Also it seems many of the mini fuchsias tend to have some resistance, isis for example has never gotten it here. It also depends on having a cold winter, it seems if you get a nice cold winter, the fuchsias are less likely to get the mite. I would cut them back hard, put the cuttings in the trash and check to see if you are growing the ones that have resistance.

And hello to you again, I just came back on Daves, been gone for a couple years and missed it, so came back. Nice to find you again.

Emerald Hills, CA(Zone 9b)

Hi Rebecca,

Nice to see you, again, too!

I've decided to give up on the fuchsia's that are afflicted with mite & stick with the mite resistant ones. Just placed an order for 5 starts from Earthworks - on sale for $2,75 each! Last summer, I only had one that was afflicted & I cut it back very hard, (left no foliage at all) - it grew back great, but it & several others developed the mite this summer. We just don't get very cold here - some winter's we hit freezing, others not... As you mentioned, the resistant ones tend to be smaller, so I'll grow those & find a couple of bigger ones over time.

Welcome back! Hope your nursery is thriving!


Gold Beach, OR(Zone 9a)

You can do the bolivian fuchsias, those are fantastic and also the fanfare. The Bolivian comes in 2 colors, get huge and are quite exotic but overwinter even if they get some freezing. I grew mine from seeds, in case you don't know, fuchsias are very easy from seed. I just took the fruit, squashed it into a pot, covered it lightly and watered it. If the fruit is fresh, the results are hundreds of fuchsias. I was surprised how easy it was. If you get a species one, they will come true, like the bolivian and fanfare, others you may get all kinds of variations. I only tried this a few years ago, I did not know how easy it would be to grow fuchsias from seed.

I am enjoying catching up but so many of the people I really liked are gone. So will make some new friends.

I had to close down the nursery this last summer, for many reasons the economy the most significant. Such is life. But still have lots of gardens and of course, still searching for the cool plants.

Glad to see you again, tell me what fuchisas you ordered?

Emerald Hills, CA(Zone 9b)


I had no idea that fuchsias are easy to grow from seed - definitely something I may try. I didn't know about Bolivian fuchsias - they're stunning! I see some are available on Ebay - will check them out...

Yes, Dave's has changed a lot. I hang out on the "other" website, but find more activity on this one.

Are you still doing some landscaping or have you slowed down? I find that my energy for gardening isn't what it was a few years ago. Thank goodness, I've done the bulk of my landscaping on my big (for our area) hilly property & can work on areas more slowly - I keep falling on the hills lately, but haven't suffered any real damage. (I think I recall that you used to live in Silicon Valley, so you understand that our 1/3 acre is considered to be big.)

The fuchsias I order are: Baby Chang, f.denticulata, f.magellanica macrastema, f.paniculata, & dainty earrings. I confess that I'm terrible about keeping tags in place, so I may not know which is which by the time they grow to be big enough to notice.

I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving. How is your Uncle doing?


Gold Beach, OR(Zone 9a)

I have those, Baby Chang and Chang are just awesome. They are the ones that got me totally into fuchsias, I love the blooms that are odd. I think I have some seeds for the Bolivian, both colors, if you would like to give them a try. Do not buy any seeds, they have to be fresh, lots of people fail with the seeds because the ones they purchase are not fresh. I love denticulata, very exotic and I leave my outside without protection, they are very hardy.

If you get a chance to get a F. splendens, grab one, that is my new favorite, I just got it this last summer and its blooming beautifully.

My uncle is having some problems. I have been taking him to doctors this whole year, lots of problems. The latest one is they think he has some problem with the prostrate or bladder, we have to go in and do some tests at the hospital in Coos Bay on Tuesday. Its not been a good year for him at all. He is 88 now and starting to really get old on me.

I had a going out of business sale and made enough money so I do not have to look for work till January or so, then I will look. There is not much here but I do not need to make a lot of money, I am 60 so can take early ss at 62, I have a year and a half I will need to do something.

I have been working hard on my yards, I have 2.5 acres here and I was unable to have any help with the nursery for the last 2 years so I had let them go. Lots of weeds but I am enjoying that, just doing my own yard work. I have quite a large area, probably over 1/2 acre that had nursery stock, I will be doing something with it but cannot figure out what design I want in there or if I just want grass, I still have lots of plants I saved in pots to put in the ground when I can make up my mind what I want to do. I think in the spring when its warmer I can figure it out better, I ended the nursery quickly, its complicated but the decision was made within a week and my sale was 2 weeks later and I was done. So still getting over the shock of that, I had it for 8 years and lots of work and money went into it, it was hard to throw in the towel.

I have one granddaughter here, Mishka Snow and my daughter has a boyfriend who has a 3 year old, they have custody of him and I have pretty much gotten attached to him, so they keep me busy. We go to the movies at least once a month, not so easy here, we have an hour trip each way but its so much fun to go to the movies with the kids. We saw Life of Pi yesterday, was not as good as I thought it would be but the 3d was awesome.

What is new with you? Why are you falling off the hills? I am taking yoga now, we have quite a teacher here, she studies it continually, is going to India next month for classes and she learns new tricks to use on us. I think it may be helping me, its not hurting me and I do like it.

Emerald Hills, CA(Zone 9b)


I'm excited to try the denticula - they don't look like any fuchsias I've every seen. Is the splendens mite resistant? One of the pics on the database is from a source I've bought starts from in the past, so I can contact her about getting one. I would love to try the Bolivian the next time you get some fresh seeds.

I'm glad that you were able to liquidate your nursery in a way that took the immediate financial pressure off you. I'm also 60. I suspect the social security from your Silicon Valley will make it feasible to live in your area, which is (hopefully) a little cheaper. After hearing you talk about the "Banana Belt", I researched the area, but we've now found an over 55 community closer to home (between Sonoma & Santa Rosa), where we hope to retire.

My DH is chomping at the bit to retire - he's 62, has been working in the same business (radio) since he was 18 & is completely burned out. My idea of retirement would be cutting back to half time or so. Fortunately, I'm in a business (accounting) where I can freelance. In fact, I started a 2nd job a year ago, doing the accounting for a successful start-up co-founded by a former co-worker; my son works there too. They wanted me to join the company full-time & I was very tempted, but ultimately decided that I'm not at the right time in my life to be gearing up work & stress-wise... so, I'm working 2 jobs, until they complete their second round of funding & hire a full-time Controller. I may decide to work with them one day a week & cut down to four days at my current job, because I found that I really enjoy the more in-depth accounting I'm doing for them.

How old is Mishka now? I imagine she's in about 3rd grade? She sounded like such a special little girl. Does she act maternally toward the 3 year old?

Oh - falling off hills.... I'm just a klutz - have never had a good sense of balance & our backyard slopes down, facing toward the bay... Is the yoga good for your knee (seem to remember you had knee issues)?

How strange that we seem to have our own private thread going!


Magnolia, TX(Zone 8b)

Threads are slo now, since they added FB esp. We cruise around and try to help out on bugs, id plants and such, but sometimes the requests come frrom farther than we are familiar with. Thanx for the info the hummers are spreading that gallmite.

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