BFS Snowfire


Wishing all members a happy and prosperous growing year in 2024
The weather this year has been challenging! First a wet April, then a dry May with one very hot spell around Malvern Spring, and another later in May, then so far a rather cold and wet June. I hope all your fuchsias are surviving and growing well. Hardy fuchsias in the garden despite their delayed start are now coming into flower.

We are running seven BFS national shows in 2024, the first being the Eastern show on Sunday 14th June. Details are in the events page. Why not try and go along to one of them? We would very much look forward to meeting you so please come and introduce yourself. All the show schedules can be downloaded from the members pages or by contacting the show managers.

The 2024 show offer on membership is now open and any new member joining from now to the end of October 2024 will have their membership continue to until 31st October 2025. You can join via our membership page using the online form and PayPal or download a membership form and send to the Secretary with a cheque. Note that this offer is not open to ex members who did not renew in the last two years.

The Summer Bulletin was posted out to all members on Tuesday 25th June. I hope you have all received it but I understand that although several members received theirs the next day, the Royal Mail have taken a long time to deliver many of them. If you have not received yours then please contact the Secretary.

The next publications will be the Annual and separate Show Results Bulletin which will be sent at the end of October. These will also have the Renewal and 2025 Plant Distribution forms enclosed. I sure the Editor would welcome any contributions so why not consider writing a short article for him?

At our recent committee meeting we decided to maintain the subscription and affiliation subscriptions at their current level for 2025.

  • Remove any old or yellowing leaves and treat any pests or disease as soon as seen. Whitefly can be a difficult problem in the summer if they become established.
  • Keep plants as far apart as possible and avoid leaves touching. Ensure the greenhouse has suitable shading and good ventilation. Some growers remove some glass from the apex ends of the greenhouse and cover with netting.
  • Damp down the greenhouse floor and benches to keep up the humidity in the greenhouse. This will also discourage red spider mite.
  • Turn plants through 90° every few days.
  • Preferably water your plants in the early morning, not when the greenhouse is in full sun in the middle of the day. Any plants which flag despite not being dry, do not give them more water, but move them to a cool shady place.
  • It is generally too hot in June, July and August to take good cuttings. Wait until the late summer and early autumn to take them. Many growers take them from show plants that have been cut back and allowed to shoot again.
  • Garden hardy fuchsias should now be coming into flower. Keep any beds hoed through to keep down weeds. A second application of granular balanced fertiliser can also be hoed in in June. Established hardy fuchsias should not need any watering except in an exceptionally long dry spell. Newly planted hardy fuchsias should be given a good soak weekly until established.
  • Any decorative pots, planters, baskets etc should be kept watered and fed regularly. Remove any dead flowers or forming berries (seedpods) to ensure that the fuchsias will continue to flower
  • Any tall structures e.g. standards which are growing outside, ensure they are well supported to prevent them blowing over and being damaged.
  • Most plants grown for show, should have had their finals stops except for the September shows. These will be made towards the end of June and early July. As a rough guide 60 days for singles, 65 to 70 days for semi-doubles and 70 to 75 days for doubles. However, some cultivars will behave differently needing shorter or longer times, so you need to get to know the varieties you are growing
  • Keep a close eye on outside plants for any signs of growing tips being infected with fuchsia gall mite, especially after strong winds. If any tips are found to be infected, cut them back three nodes below the damage and spray the plant with a pyrethroid based insecticide.
  • Most Important! Continue to enjoy your fuchsias