The Q&A Archives: Bringing Fuchias and Boston Ferns Indoors

Question: I Live in Livermore, CA and I have a dozen or so hanging potted plants under a 50% shade patio (lattice). Impatiens, Boston ferns, and Fuchsia to name a few. I have quite a few dollars tied up in these plants. What should I do with them in the winter? Garage them, grow light and water, anything to save them for next year.

Answer: Impatiens do not winter over well even with the best of care (not including a greenhouse). Any special effort you might want to give to them would not be a lot more expensive than buying new plants next spring. Boston ferns are very good indoor plants given a indirectly-lit window and a moist (but not soggy) soil. Fuchsias take a little attention. They can be allowed to go dryish and kept in a sunny window in a semi-dormant stage (just enough water to keep them from becoming tinder). Trim off all soft or skinny growth. In late winter, cut back real hard to a handful of major stems about 4 inches long. Begin a watering and feeding schedule and put the plants out after all frost is past.

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