Grow Fuschia Indoors?

aviolet6(7)May 1, 2012

Can this plant be grown as a houseplant in the south? If not, why not? I ordered some little ones last summer and they died within a few weeks indoors despite my best efforts to keep them watered properly and getting sunlight but not too much. I am wondering if I could perhaps treat them like an african violet - grow them under a fluorescent light in a lite soil mix and wick water it so it stays constantly moist? Any ideas?

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ifraser25(z11 Brazil)

The problem with growing fuchsia indoors, especially in a warm climate is that the air is too dry. This leaves it vulnerable to pests and diseases. Why don't you leave it in the garden to grow and then when you get a good display bring it inside to show.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2012 at 6:13PM
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mark4321_gw

aviolet,

I run into the reverse problem all the time--I grow a lot of plants outside here and they grow like weeds. However they need our cooler summers to survive. They won't live through Southern heat, especially the warm nights. So the question constantly arises of whether they will make it as house plants. Fuchsias are certainly among my plants that have this "problem".

A quick search online suggests that there are many people who claim that Fuchsias make good houseplants and also many personal accounts of failure.

Your ideas make sense as something to try. Since Fuchsias are so easy to root by cuttings, why not root a few of one type, try a bunch of approaches and see what happens?

Another possibility is that certain Fuchsias may be much easier (or harder) than others. What if all/most of the florist's hybrids are difficult, but certain species adapt well to growing inside? Does anyone even know?

I grow a small number of species and primary hybrids which vary dramatically in growth habit and size. I'm more than happy to send (for postage or whatever) cuttings of these plants. My problem right now is that my plants are mostly small, so it might have to wait until they grow a little.

Here's what I have right now:

F. procumbens (trying to root some right now)
F. x bacillaris (microphylla x thmifolia)
F. denticulata
F. boliviana Alba (ripe berries right now, for anyone interested in seeds for postage)
F. 'First Success' (paniculata x splendens)

I think trying a number of very different species would make more sense than similar hybrids.

As an example, Fuchsia boliviana Alba would make a stunning houseplant if it did well. There are sites online that suggest it can be grown as a houseplant. Do I believe it? I'm not sure. I don't think I've ever seen a photo of one blooming that was grown as a houseplant. Of course I would love to see them if they do exist.

    Bookmark   June 19, 2012 at 2:27AM
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mytime(3/4 Alaska)

I think it depends on a variety of factors. I have kept fuchsia alive in the house all winter after being outside all summer. But the first thing it does shortly after being brought in is lose most of its leaves. Then it grows new ones. After that I have 2 problems...light in our dark winter season (a grow light would fix that, though), and keeping it humid enough, which is a much bigger problem. Sometimes they get spider mites, too. But if I start a dormant plant in the spring indoors, they do beautifully, lush and blooming before I'm even close to taking them out, not seeming to mind the dryness. I think those would probably make a better houseplant than the ones that are acclimated to outside conditions.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2012 at 1:05PM
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ifraser25(z11 Brazil)

I agree that Fuschias and heat don't go well together and many types definitely struggle here in Brazil. However, the hot period is long (most of the year!) and that isn't the case in most of USA. I agree, whichever way, it's a good idea to take some cuttings as an insurance policy.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2012 at 9:10PM
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