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How to take care of the beautiful Fuchsia?

ritau
08-12
1. Test the soil every day before you water the plant. Stick your finger 1 inch (2.5 cm) into the soil to feel for moisture. If it feels dry or if you rub your fingers together and see bits of dry soil flaking off, it's time for a good watering.
-If it's damp, wait 12 to 24 hours before checking the soil again.
-Daily watering is especially important during hot summer months.
-Most fuchsias like to be watered every day, but under or over-watering can cause the leaves to wilt so it's wise to check the soil first.
-Hanging baskets dry out faster than standing pots, so you may need to test the soil twice a day (especially on hot or dry days).

2. Pour water onto the soil until it drains from the bottom of the pot. Start by pouring water onto the base of the plant and then water the entire surface of the soil. Keeping pouring until you notice water dribbling out of the bottom of the pot.
-The goal is to keep the soil evenly moist but not sopping wet.
-If you don't see water coming out of the drainage holes, they may be clogged or the soil may not be draining properly (in which case, you should re-pot the plant).

3. Water the plant 2 to 3 times a week in the fall. Once summer is over, start watering your fuchsia plant every other day or just twice a week. Always test the soil with your finger first—if it's bone dry, go ahead and water it. If it's even the slightest bit damp, wait another day and check again.
Withholding water in the fall will prepare the plant for winter dormancy so it can reenergize and grow beautiful blooms in the spring!

4. Limit your waterings to 8 fl oz (240 mL) every 3 to 4 weeks in the winter. Let the soil get relatively dry starting in mid-November to early March (the exact months will vary depending on where you live). A good rule of thumb is to water it with 8 fluid ounces (240 mL) of water every 3 weeks or each month, but you can also feel the soil with your finger to see if it's bone dry. If it is, go ahead and water it and wait another 3 to 4 weeks before watering it again.
The plant will be in its dormant phase during the winter and your job is to make sure the soil doesn't get dusty-dry—a little dry is okay.



5. Fertilize the plant once a week during spring and summer months. Use a fertilizer with equal parts nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium—a 20-20-20 or 16-16-16 blend is perfect. The amount of fertilizer you need to use depends on the size of the pot, but you should always read the instructions on the package.
-For instance, if you're fertilizing a 12 in (30 cm) pot, you might use 7 drops of liquid fertilizer for each 33 fluid ounces (980 mL) of water or sprinkle 3 to 4 tsp (15 to 20 g) of granular fertilizer on top of the soil.
If your plant is outside, stop fertilizing it 2 weeks before you bring it inside for the colder months.
Bone meal also makes an excellent fertilizer for fuchsia. You can buy it at any garden supply store.
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