The Q&A Archives: Propagating Fuchsias

Question: I have been given cuttings from a fuchsia plant and would like to know if I can propagate the woody cuttings? I do have a greenhouse, and could create an ideal environment if it is possible.

Answer: Fuchsia's are generally propagated from softwood cuttings rather than woody cuttings. Once the stem has developed bark, it won't root as readily. If you can convince your friend to give you some soft, pliable stems, you can root them in the following manner: use a 3" long tip cutting and remove the lower leaves, but leave the top intact. Dip the cut end in rooting hormone, shake off the excess and place the cut end in moistened potting soil. Put 3 sticks into the pot and drape plastic wrap over the top to help raise the humidity around the cuttings. Just drape the plastic, don't secure it to the pot or you'll create an airless chamber and the cuttings will rot. As soon as new buds begin to swell remove the plastic. When new stems and leaves appear, the cuttings have rooted. You can leave them in their pots or transplant into slightly larger pots. Don't forget to use a razor blade or sharp knife to take cuttings - scissors or your fingernails will crush the tissues and your cuttings won't root.

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