Fuchsia: an exotic plant
It was the 1600s when Charles Plumier, a French Franciscan friar, introduced into Europe two ornamental plants that came from South America and that in a short time they were widespread in the gardens of the nobles of the time. The first was the begonia; the second was the fuchsia. Its botanical name, which is Fuchsia, was given to him in honor and memory of Leonhart Fuchs, a German doctor who wrote numerous naturalistic treatises but who lived before Plumier and therefore, in fact, never knew this plant. Fuchsia belongs to the Onagraceae family and exists in nature in about one hundred different varieties, while later on they have also been created of hybrids of even more daring colors, which are then the most widespread on the market. All the varieties are characterized by the particular shape of the flowers.
Among the most common varieties of fuchsia we can mention: - Fuchsia fulgens: originally from Mexico, it becomes a small tree up to two meters high, has pendulous flowers that can even measure up to 8 centimeters in length, of red color - Fuchsia magellanica : it is native to Central and South America and grows in bushes that can reach even 4 meters high and 2 wide; it has pendulous flowers of an intense pink color and is widely used for hybridization - Fuchsia procumbens: it comes from New Zealand and is well suited for cultivation in aerial vessels, especially in apartments; it has heart-shaped leaves and yellow flowers with purple streaks. As was said, then, numerous hybrids have been created that mainly play on flower colors: among the most widespread can be remembered Cascade, with white and carmine flowers, or Winston Churchill , blue and pink.
Cultivation and care
Taking care of these plants is not at all difficult, since they are very resistant: all you need to do is remember what the climate and the environment they need are. The only thing they fear, in fact, is drought and intense heat. The ideal temperature fluctuates between 16 and 18 degrees, but fuchsia also likes to be in a bright environment, never exposed to direct sunlight. In particular, the humidity of the earth must be constant: during the flowering period , which begins in spring and lasts until late summer, for some species even in autumn, the leaves must always be sprayed. The type of soil it needs must be very fertile and mixed with peat and sand; in the vegetative period it should not be fertilized, while in the growth period it is possible to use a liquid fertilizer containing phosphorus, nitrogen and potassium.
Fuchsia plant: Multiplication and diseases
If the plant of fuchsia that one possesses grows luxuriantly, and one would like to try to create another, the best way is that of reproduction by cutting. To make it, you must cut a branch of the mother plant, using a knife or sterilized scissors. The branch should be planted in damp soil, in a vase, and then covered with a plastic bag. Finally the vase should be placed in a shady and cool place. Every day you have to wet the soil and remove the condensation from the plastic, until the severed twig does not root. In the life of fuchsia one must then remember to prune it regularly at the end of winter, otherwise it can grow in a disordered way; and attention must be paid to diseases that can attack it, especially to parasites such as red spider mites or lice.