The Q&A Archives: Rejuvenating a Fuchsia from a Manure Overdose

Question: I recently purchased a fuchsia tree and brought it home to transplant into a larger pot. I realize now that I did a stupid thing when I added steer manure to the top of the soil. I have since removed the manure, and replaced it with regular potting soil. The tree is fading fast. Is there anything I can do to save my beautiful brand new tree? Please help. Carolyn Shaw Colton, CA

Answer: What might have happened is the roots were suffocated by adding the steer manure on top of the soil. It was good you removed the manure. Don't add more soil above the existing soil line. The roots will dieback. Also, steer manure can sometimes be high in salts. So flush the soil with water to remove any accumulated salts. If you're really worried about the plant, try repotting with fresh soilless mix.

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