Growing fuchsia standards is not as difficult as it might appear. Fuchsia standards have a clear main stem topped with a dense head of foliage created through pinch pruning and make superb specimen plants. However patience is required as they may take up to 18 months of careful training to achieve.

Here are my top tips for growing fuchsia standards;

growing fuchsia standard•    Allow a young fuchsia stem to grow upright, whilst removing all of the side shoots as they develop. Do not remove the leaves from the mail stem however, as these will feed the plant.
•    Tie the main stem in to a cane to provide support as it grows.
•    Once the fuchsia plant reaches 20cm (8″) taller than the desired height, pinch out the stem tip.
•    New side shoots will be produced at the top of the plant and these will form the head of the standard. Pinch out the tips of each side shoot when it reaches 2 to 4 sets of leaves. Continue pinch pruning until a rounded head has formed.
•    The leaves on the main stem will be shed naturally in time, or can be carefully removed.

To overwinter standard fuchsias, they will need to be moved to a frost free position during the winter months to protect their vulnerable stem from frost damage, regardless of how hardy the variety is.

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