A week to 10 days before planting, add 2 to 4 inches of aged manure or compost and work into the planting site to improve fertility and increase water retention and drainage. If soil composition is weak, a layer of topsoil should be considered as well. No matter if your soil is sand or clay, it can be improved by adding the same thing: organic matter. The more, the better; work deep into the soil. Prepare beds to an 18 inch deep for perennials. This will seem like a tremendous amount of work now, but will greatly pay off later. Besides, this is not something that is easily done later, once plants have been established
Fuchsia plants are some of the earliest ones sold in spring. Why? Because these extravagant bloomers prefer cool air. For many types, their ideal growing temperature is 55° to 80°F. Some fuchsias stop forming flowers at higher temperatures. In regions with naturally cool summers, fuchsias thrive easily. In warmer regions, fuchsia plant care must be on target to keep these bloomers happy.
To succeed with fuchsias, give them bright indirect light in most regions with protection from afternoon sun. In foggy areas of Coastal California or the Pacific Northwest, where summers are cool, full sun is fine. Fuchsias perform well in containers on porches or north-facing patios.
Protect containers from prolonged sun exposure because fuchsia plants dislike hot soil. When temperatures slip into the 90s, many fuchsia flowers drop and plants stop blooming until lower temperatures return
Soil & Watering
Fuchsias are fussy about soil. It can’t be too wet, too dry or too hot. In containers, use a commercial bagged potting mix developed for the close confines of a pot. These mixes are soil-less, lightweight and drain well. Mix in a handful of compost to enhance soil fertility. To keep soil from overheating, site your fuchsia where the pot is shaded through much of the day. A porch, north-facing deck or partially shaded location works well. You can also create some shade by surrounding your fuchsia pot with other containers that shade it.
Successful fuchsia plant care requires attention to soil moisture. Avoid letting soil in containers dry out completely. Keep soil moist, but don’t overwater. The best gauge for knowing when to water is shoving your finger into soil or lifting the container. Wet soil is heavy; dry pots are light.
Fertilizing & Growth
To encourage fuchsia flowers to form in record numbers, pinch out growing tips until flower buds form. This works if you overwinter fuchsias or buy small seedlings. Removing stem tips causes stems to branch and become bushy. More branches mean more flowers.
For plants in full bloom when you buy them, keep the flower show going strong by watering with a water-soluble bloom booster fertilizer every 7 to 10 days. Slow-release bloom booster fertilizers work, too, but for fuchsias in containers, plants need more nutrients more often than a slow release delivers. Pair a slow release bloom booster with a weekly dose of water soluble bloom booster at half the recommended rate.
The last step in encouraging fuchsia flower formation is to remove the berry-like fruits that form on plants. They’ll appear as hard green fruits at first, then slowly ripen to a softer, often purple fruit. All types are edible, although many are flavorless or have an unpleasant aftertaste. Fuchsia splendens is supposed to have the tastiest fruit that folks use to make jam.