certainly Regia Regia
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Fuchsia Fanciers, Australia
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holiday to Bateman's Bay on the south coast of NSW I visited Mogo.
the nursery there, there was a large fuchsia growing like a tree, its trunk was 2 or 3
what were obviously originally vine like branches twisted together. It was
obviously old and very gnarled. It was in full bloom in March 2006.
nursery owner said her grandfather had been a fuchsia enthusiast but she didn't
know anything about the magnificent plant. She said she usually took cuttings
and sold the plants but didn't have small ones (just a huge one in a concrete
pot) at the time. She agreed to dig up a sucker for me and sell me some cuttings.
So that night at the beachside cabin we were renting, I potted them up. Two
cuttings survived and now they are over 5ft high.
The "tree" unfortunately the sun made it difficult for my inexpert
variety in a big pot trained as a shrub so maybe the "tree" was trained
to climb the post.
The "trunks" tied to a 5 inch thick post.
Below some close-ups of the flowers.
Photos of my cuttings now nearly 6ft high, I am trying to grow another
"tree". The leaves are much bigger than the parent plant.
The cuttings take quite readily and are self branching - I
have had to take off over 20 side shoots from the 2 plants. The leaves on my
plants are much larger than the parent and at this stage flatter. This maybe due
to better watering and fertilizing (maybe too much).
I have searched through all my books and on the net and haven't been able to
find anything that really matches, even taking into consideration the fact
that many fuchsias grow larger here than described in British books. Some photos
are very similar but the description does not tally or vice-versa.
|Just recently a friend also visited Mogo and took photos of the same fuchsia.
I remembered it as all red but this much clearer photo shows a small
purple corolla, maybe it was faded purple when I saw it.
As you can see the tube and the sepals are quite long
and the corolla small. The flowers are quite large for singles 3 to 4
cm, the leaves 6 to 8 cm on the original, much larger on my cuttings.
Reply from South Africa
I think it may be a species F regia var regia.
I am no expert on species fuchsias but some year ago I was told about an
herbarium specimen in the local Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden collected some
50 years earlier in an indigenous forest near Knysna a coastal village 600
km south east from Cape Town. We contacted the local forester and were given
an approximate location - somewhat to our surprise we found it along a
gravel road deep in the forest - the forest is said to still have elephants
roaming but they have not been seen for years!
We took cuttings and I have it growing at home - I have shown photos to
experts overseas and the likely ID is F regia regia a native of Brazil. We sent
stick cuttings to Arthur Tickner UK for DNA fingerprinting for a definite ID
but this has not yet been done.
Interestingly the postulate is that early sailors, making use of trade winds
made landfall in Brazil before crossing the Atlantic to round the Cape of
Good Hope en route to the Far East. Knysna used to be a small port and it is
presumed sailors must have brought it there - how it landed deep in the
forest remains a mystery but we did see a hedge of it in a forester's
Reply from Ireland
Your mystery plant looks like Fuchsia regia ssp regia to me. It known as
"the Climbing Fuchsia", because it will scramble through shrubs
and appear high up in them to flower. Funnily enough I bought a rooted
cutting of it at a show a month ago and its grown about 250mm already. There
is more info on the 'net. Good Luck with your garden.
Visit my fuchsia garden