Fuchsias Training And Management
We confess to have a special liking for the Fuchsias, and think no
assortment of house plants is complete without one or two varieties of
these beautiful flowers. They are easily propagated, either from
cuttings or by layers, and the amount of bloom
one strong, healthy plant
is capable of producing under favorable circumstances, is truly
wonderful. Upon one plant of Fuchsia speciosa, started from a cutting of
a single eye in March, we counted at one time, in the December
following, one hundred and fifty perfect blossoms. The plant stood in an
eight-inch pot, and measured four feet in hight. Some kinds do better as
house plants than others, among the best are F. speciosa, F.
fulgens, and the Rose of Castile, and I would particularly recommend
these sorts as superior to all others for the window-garden. The right
kind of soil has everything to do with success in growing fine Fuchsias;
it should be of a light peaty quality, with one-third cow manure, and
thoroughly mixed together until well decayed. They also relish an
abundance of water; and if they have, while growing, an application of
liquid manure once or twice a week, it will be beneficial; never allow
the roots to become potbound, but when the roots begin to form a mat on
the outside of the ball of earth, it is time to shift the plant into a
pot of the next larger size, and so on as the plant requires it. This is
a very important point, and should not be overlooked if strong, healthy
plants are expected.
Fuchsias are especially desirable for training on trellises. They can be
trained over an upright trellis, and have a very pretty effect, but the
best form is that of an umbrella. Secure a strong, vigorous plant, and
allow one shoot to grow upright until about two feet high, then pinch
off the top of the shoot. It will branch out and form a head, each shoot
of which, when sufficiently long, may have a fine thread or hair-wire
attached to the tip, by which to draw it downward; fasten the other end
of the wire or thread to the stem of the plant, and all the shoots will
then be pendent. When each of these branches has attained a length of
eight inches, pinch off the tip, and the whole will form a dense head,
resembling an umbrella in shape, and the graceful flowers pendent from
each shoot will be handsome indeed. Remember to keep the stock clear of
side-shoots, in order to throw the growth into the head.
If properly taken care of, most Fuchsias will bloom the year round, but
some kinds can be especially recommended for winter blooming, among them
are F. speciosa, flesh-colored, with scarlet corolla; F.
serratifolia, orange-scarlet corolla, greenish sepals; Meteor, deep-red
corolla, light-pink sepals. The following are the finest in every
respect that the market affords: Mrs. Bennett, pink; Sir Cohn Campbell,
double blue; Rose of Castile, single violet; Elm City, double scarlet;
Carl Holt, crimson; Tower of London, double blue; Wave of Life, foliage
yellow, corolla violet; F. speciosa, single, flesh-colored, and F.
fulgens, long red corolla.
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