Salvaging fuchsia ‘Mrs Popple’

Whenever I plant up a garden it is always rewarding to salvage plants from existing borders if I can. As long as they are not plants my client loathes, they are healthy, they fit in with the scheme, and they are not too big to be moved or split up.

Today we decided to salvage a Fuchsia ‘Mrs Popple, in full flower. It was in the wrong place, and causing a nuisance flopping over the lawn. But where to put it? Ah, next to the pond! It settled in nicely there, and the colourful arching branches near the water’s edge were a pretty addition.

It’s surprising how,  in a new position, surrounded by complementary leaf colours and shapes, or a pleasing backdrop, plants can sometimes take on a different character and even transform your view of them.

Fuchsias are a bit of a marmite plant, and seem to have fallen out of fashion. We often see ‘Mrs Popple’ in gardens as a survivor from borders planted in the seventies as it is so hardy and easy to grow.

I have never been a big fan of fuchsias, but today this one showed me what a performer it can be; not only because of it’s out of season vibrancy, but also because of it’s delicate graceful nature, particularly fitting near a pond. It might not be everybody’s cup of tea, but it is actually one of those valuable long flowering plants that give great value. At a time when most plants are bedding down for the winter, this fuchsia is still out to play for a while yet.

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