From the outset, you need to decide on one of these three final sizes:
Low stem: between 30 and 45 cm.
Half-stem: between 45 and 75 cm.
High stem: over 75 cm.
Best time to start work: Early May or early August during the vegetative period.
Choose a strong, straight cutting whose tip has not been pinched (cut)
(fig. 1). Repot the plant in good potting soil (geranium potting soil) in a stable pot.
Loosely tie the cutting to a stake every 5 centimetres, taking care not to damage the stem or the leaves.
(fig. 2) Leave the pot in the open air in a bright, wind-sheltered place. Carefully remove the side shoots (axillary buds) as soon as they are large enough to be cut off: our aim is to encourage height growth. (fig. 3)
Remember to turn your pot by half a turn every 4 or 5 days in order to have a nice rounded head. Leave the leaves on the trunk as they act as a sap puller and allow the plant to carry out its photosynthesis. Give a fertiliser once a week of the following composition (on the foliage or in the pot, preferably in the evening):
- N: Nitrogen: 20
- P: Phosphorus: 20
- K: Potassium: 20
Once the plant has reached a sufficiently large size, it may be necessary to repot it into a larger pot. This should be done with the utmost care so as not to damage the roots. You can also use this opportunity to put in a stronger stake.
When the stem reaches the desired height: pinch off the head above the third leaf stage (fig. 4). Let 4 to 6 upper side shoots grow, they will form the base of the crown, pinch off these new shoots above the 2nd stage (fig.5).
Once all these steps have been completed, you can remove the leaves from the 3 stages (fig.6).
In winter, you can pinch off the two-eyed branches.
Here is a list of the varieties we recommend for your fuchsia stem (not exhaustive).