mail order or online suppliers of hardy fuchsia?

megajas(z7 VA)June 28, 2007


I live in USA-VA/zone 7a and am looking for a few hardy fuchsia for my back yard. The ones I have seen that I prefer are either F. magellanica 'Aurea' or F. magellanica 'Sharpton's' for thier varigated and golden foilage. Does anyone know of someplace these could be obtained? I don't mind small starts versus larger pots. Are there any other suggestions for this area? I'm partial to the bright red/purple or pinks ... upright prefered but not required. MUST be ground hardy.



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aftermidnight Zone7b B.C. Canada

The two mail Fuchsia nurseries I know of are.....Monnier's Country Garden's and Earthworks Fuchsias. I have received some very nice plants from Monnier's, have never ordered from Earthworks so can't give an opinion on them.


    Bookmark   June 28, 2007 at 12:42PM
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I have ordered from Earthworks and they sent the plants promptly. They have a large selection and are not expensive.

    Bookmark   June 28, 2007 at 4:06PM
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Earthworks is local to me, and their rooted cuttings are a good bargain.

>>Are there any other suggestions for this area? I'm partial to the bright red/purple or pinks ... upright prefered but not required. MUST be ground hardy.

Good news is that all magellanica types should be root-hardy for you with a mulch. Bright red/deep purple is by far the most common coloration among wild Fuchsias and tends to dominate the hardies, although there are other possibilities.

F. magellanica has a huge range, and varies slightly in hardiness. Some types, such as from subalpine scrub or at the Straits of Magellan which are its southern limit, are quite coldhardy. A typcal magellanica type will survive somewhat north of you with a mulch and people used to grow them in parts of the midwest in Victorian times.

F. campos-portoi is a close cousin that looks a lot like it (finer leaves and smaller flowers than most magellanicas but really not significant); it is a little coldhardier than an average magellanica and reputedly more heat tolerant. Not as easy to root tho, which seems odd.

Fuchsia regia is strangely coldhardy for a plant from a climate whose winters are about as cold as Florida's. It should do fine in Virginia. It looks like the other two but is a tall plant whose long stems reach into the trees for support.

There are a lot of hybrids that are close to F. magellanica; some have white corollas instead of purple. Not a huge color range typically. F. magellanica var molinae, which some people call "magalba" (it's not really an alba), is a big hardy form from Chiloe island with small pale purple ("pink"--not really but people call them that) blossoms.

It is worth mentioning, but hard to get the real thing in this country, that there is a magellanica type called "Riccartoni" which is extra-hardy. It is named for a garden or perhaps castle in Scotland, where it was noticed and named. It is distinguishable from other magellanicas by its short tube. Technically I do not have it, but I have a short-tubed magellanica seedling that showed up in my garden as a volunteer, probably having reverted from a hybrid ancestor.

Most plants sold as "Riccartoni" in the USA are nothing but plain old typical versions of magellanica.

Here is something I am not sure of in terms of hardiness limits, so others please chime in--some encycliandra/thymifolia types are relatively coldhardy. They have wee blossoms, one species is fragrant!!!! (probably the only Fuchsia that is), not quite typical Fuchsia shape (the petals are vestigial I think), and fine, "ferny" looking foliage. Some of them get big (wee blossoms and tiny leaves on a good-sized shrub). They are not typical Fuchsias, but come from cloudforests of southern Mexico, far north of typical Fuchsia country. Although typically pollinated by bees, the ruby-flowered types still attract hummingbirds. They also come in cerise, whites, pinks, mauves, pale purples, etc.

I hate to say this but...non-variegated plants will be easier to grow. The variegation compromises hardiness, vigor, blossoming, and shade-tolerance.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2007 at 4:08AM
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