SHAZ made a wonderful slideshow up of her visit to the Gateshead Flower Show. One of the photos was of a standard Fuchsia. We haven't had one of these for a few years and seeing that photo gave me the urge to start taking some cuttings and starting a new one. Not having a heated greenhouse I have to overwinter cuttings on the windowsills so daren't do too many but every year I never lsten to myself and always take so many that I' hunting for space come the Winter. I'm clamping down this year though and except for the Fuchsias I'm only takings cuttings of Osteospernum Sheila and Pelargonium Black Lady...they've both done so well despite the fickle weather this year. I will of course be overwintering the mother plants too but I often find that small rooted cuttings seem to overwinter easier than larger plants. Everybody has their own method of taking cuttings and so I won't go into too much detail as to how I do it but if you're taking a cutting primarily to make a Standard Fuchsia a three leafed cutting makes a better head. I'd love to show you a photo so you can see what I mean but not one of my Fuchsias has a three leaf stem at the moment!!!
This isn't always possible....if you can't or it makes the cutting too long just cut beneath a node and remove any flower buds. I like to use a really open compost and always mix a good load of vermiculite in with my potting compost (perlite, grit or sand can be used...not building sand though!)The Fuchsia and OsteospErnum cuttings I tidied up and put straight into a pot of compost (I always put them around the edge)...watered in and covered with half an empty cola bottle...then put them in a shady spot against the wall in the garden. I never bother to use hormone rooting powder or gel at this time of the year.These are a few of the Pelargonium cuttings I took..............I took off some of the lower leaves and made sure the ends of the stem were cleanly cut.....then left them to dry for a few hours.........I'd only do this with Pelargoniums...it seems to stop them rotting if the ends are allowed to form a callous........When I potted them up I watered them but didn't cover them at all...in a warm, shady spot they seem to root quite easily this way.
If your mother plant is thriving you can of course take cuttings in the Spring but I like to have something to nurture during the winter months. Of course if you've a really mild late spring you can always just snip a bit of plant off pop it into the soil against a wall and take pot luck. This is exactly what I did with a piece of the climbing Fuchsia Lady Boothby.......and look at it now!
Right that's my cutting taking done for this year................though..............well............ermmm...the Lantana, Coleus, Iresine and Verbena borensis are all quite tender and may not make it through the winter....perhaps I'll just take a few..........
SOMEBODY STOP ME PLEASE!!!!!!