Q Why are my fuch­sia flow­ers clump­ing to­gether?

Garden Answers (UK) - - Problems Solved -

MRS H CARRUTHERS, BROADSTAIRS, KENT

Since it ar­rived in Bri­tain in 2007, fuch­sia gall mite has be­come a se­ri­ous prob­lem in south­ern Eng­land. These tiny sap-suck­ing in­sects in­fest new growth and, as they feast on the shoot tips, they se­crete chem­i­cals that af­fect flower and leaf for­ma­tion. In­fected plants sim­ply pro­duce a mass of dis­torted tis­sue. Cut off the af­fected shoots and con­sider re­plant­ing with a less sus­cep­ti­ble cul­ti­var, such as ‘Cinnaba­rina’ or ‘Minia­ture Jew­els’.

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