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Guide to Fuchsia Fruit

Suzanne has been an online writer for over seven years. Her articles often focus on skin care and gardening.

fuchsia-fruit

Can You Eat Fuchsia Fruit?

Did you know that all the fuchsia plants produce berries?

Not only that, they are all edible fruits. Wow, it was certainly news to me, and fuchsia have been one of my must-have plants for years.

I have planted many different types in containers and in flower beds, growing the upright bush varieties along with the trailing fuchsias. For the life of me, I do not remember reading or being told that the fuchsia produced fruit.

I have been growing my own berries, suitable for many different mouth-watering delights, without ever knowing!

Now I know that the black mess on my patio at the end of a flowering season was the fruit, and I could have picked them for eating!

Wild Fuchsia in Our Garden

Wild fuchsia

Wild fuchsia

Fuchsia Fruit

History of the Fuchsia

In the early 18th century, the fuchsia was first discovered on the island of Hispaniola (now known as Dominican Republic and Haiti) in the Caribbean by the French monk and botanist, Charles Plumier.

He subsequently named the new discovery after the acclaimed 16th-century German botanist Leonhart Fuchs.

Today, there are more than 100 different species of Fuchsia growing throughout the world. The vast majority of fuchsia are native to Central and South America, with a small number found in New Zealand, Tahiti and on Hispaniola.

The garden fuchsia varieties we enjoy will have originated in one of these locations.

Edible Flowers

Fuchsia flowers are edible!

Fuchsia flowers are edible!

Fuchsia Flowers

The fuchsia flower, thanks to many hybrids or types, now comes in a variety of colours, shapes and sizes, but it will fall into one of three categories:

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  • Single Petal—will have 4 petals
  • Semi Double Petal—will consist of 5, 6 or 7 petals
  • Double Petal—will have 8 or 9 petals

The petals of the fuchsia are also one of the edible flowers and can look stunning as a feature in dishes such as cakes, cheesecakes, pavlova or even a garnish in a summer salad, a stew or an iced drink!

Variety of Fuchsia Colours

Colour

The colours of these striking flowers vary considerably. Many will know the reddish-purplish colour that went on to become associated with the fuchsia colour in fashion terms.

The striking two-tone colourings in many varieties come in a wide palette of shades, including white, peach, orange, yellow, pink, pinkish-purple, bluish-purple and red.

There is something for everyone in their soft or vibrant tones. With so many hybrids available in fuchsias, the colour arrays are both eye-catching and plentiful.

Shape

For me, the shape is one of the most outstanding features. The long “teardrop” shape sways like a pendulum in a light breeze, and the unique lines and curves are there to admire. Look at a flower close up, and you will see what I mean.

Size

The majority of fuchsias are shrubs and will generally grow between 0.2 and 4 m (8 in and 13 ft) in height. The one exception grows in New Zealand and is a tree, growing between 12 and 15 metres (39 ft and 49 ft) in height.

Season

The flowers are in bloom from early summer all the way through to autumn. In tropical places, they will bloom all year.The berries are formed as soon as the flower petals start falling off and are best harvested towards the end of summer into early autumn or fall, when the berries are soft. Harvesting the berries will also help to encourage renewed growth and a profusion of colour.

Fuchsia Procumbens

Fruit Info

  • The first thing to remember is that all fuchsia varieties produce fruit and, I reiterate, all are edible, though some taste better than others!
  • The spectrum of taste can range from tasteless, insipid, bitter, like pomegranate or grape, peppery, lemony to very sweet. One of the sweetest varieties is Fuchsia Procumbens (a ground covering variety).
  • Some say, "The blacker the fruit, the sweeter the taste."
  • The berries will be either round or oval in appearance and can be 0.5–1 inch in length.
  • The biggest fruit-producing fuchsias are the single petal varieties.
  • When testing the berries, treat them like you would lilies or beetroot in that they stain and can be a nightmare to get out of skin and clothing.
  • If you harvest your fruit and are happy with their ripeness and taste, use them quickly as they do not last long. You may freeze them if you wish, like other berries, for a later date.
  • Dogs and ducks have been noted fans of the fruit!

Fuchsia in Bloom

How to Use Fuchsia Fruit

Here are some ideas of dishes to help you think of ways to use your fuchsia fruit.

Do bear in mind, if you need large quantities for certain dishes, you will need a good source of berries!

You can substitute fuchsia fruit in any recipes using berries such as strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, cranberries, gooseberries, elderberries and mulberries. For example, you can use them in tea, sauces, ice creams, jelly, tarts, pies, cheesecakes, pavlovas, terrines and cakes.

You can also use them in buns, cookies, trifles and fruit cake (instead of currants).

Bon appetit!

Fun Fuchsia Poll

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

Fuchsia Fruit Comments

Michael B Stewart on April 14, 2018:

I suspected as much re: Fuchsias are edible... wonder why has been such a secret?! Have not had much luck with berry production...

Suzanne Ridgeway (author) from Dublin, Ireland on April 02, 2015:

Dear PAUL J. HINTERSTEINER ,

Apologies for delay in responding to you. I would be delighted for my article to be included and if further confirmation is needed please contact me.

Suzanne Ridgeway (author) from Dublin, Ireland on September 02, 2014:

Thanks Abbey, lovely to see you stop by. Even dogs are known to like the fruit. Trying to save enough of Fuchsia fruit has been my problem as I want to try it in some recipes!

Abbey on August 24, 2014:

I only found out just now they are edible, because my little sister started eating one! In a panic I wanted to see what it said about it on the internet and whether I needed immediate hospital attention... What a relief!

Dennis Hoyman from Southwestern, Pennsylvania on April 08, 2014:

Hi Suzie

I enjoyed your hub on edible fuchsia fruit. As a gardener I didn't know that they were edible. Thank You for all the information and keep up the great work. Gardener Den

Suzanne Ridgeway (author) from Dublin, Ireland on June 29, 2013:

Hi Marion,

Appreciate the interest! Not sure about chickens but believe dogs are quite partial to the fruit! Cheers for comment :-)

marion langley from The Study on June 29, 2013:

We just attained new chickens...I wonder what they would think of fuchsia fruit. :-) Thanks for writing. I'm a big fan of all things pretty and edible.

Suzanne Ridgeway (author) from Dublin, Ireland on June 28, 2013:

Hi Rose,

Lovely to see you enjoyed this, one of my favorite flowers. I was amazed when I found this out as I have loved growing Fuchsia for many years. Appreciate you reading and giving me the thumbs up vote, always a pleasure to see you!

rose-the planner from Toronto, Ontario-Canada on June 28, 2013:

I love fuchsia plants, but I had no clue that the berries were edible. This is another great article filled with lots of information and tips. Thank you for sharing. (Voted Up) -Rose

Suzanne Ridgeway (author) from Dublin, Ireland on June 18, 2013:

Hi precy,

I was the same a fuchsia fan, always growing different ones and never knew about the fruit! Glad I was able to impart this interesting extra to you on the fruit! Thanks so much for votes and shares!

precy anza from USA on June 18, 2013:

Wow! I've been having fuchsia's in hanging baskets for the past 2 years and wasting all the berries! I really hadn't thought that they could be edible. Now I know. :) Thanks to your hub Suzie! Up and shared this awesome hub!

Suzanne Ridgeway (author) from Dublin, Ireland on May 17, 2013:

Hi Bonny B,

Thanks for dropping by. I don't know but what I would suggest is mashing some through a fine sieve to get the juice. You may need quite a few berries. Try an off cut of cotton fabric, or a sample piece first and see what you think! Thanks for the question, good luck!!

Bonny B on May 17, 2013:

do you know if you can use these as dye on cotton?

Suzanne Ridgeway (author) from Dublin, Ireland on May 13, 2013:

Hi Bonny B,

I have heard dogs love them too so it is interesting to hear your cat is a fan of these with no obvious side-effects. Hope you have a bountiful season and your varieties are the tasty ones! Cheers for the comment!

Bonny B on May 12, 2013:

for years my fuchsia grew berries then last year I watched my cats jump up grab a berries and eat it, well if they like them so well Im going to try them,wow, sweet .sour and,juicy .can't wait for them to start this year

Suzanne Ridgeway (author) from Dublin, Ireland on March 08, 2013:

Hi Kathryn,

I love Fuchsia and have always grown a variety of species in containers, never knowing about the fruit! Looking forward to the summer now to try them here in the countryside (I moved to my partner's pad 6 months ago from Dublin). Thanks for having a read and glad you found interesting.

Kathryn from Windsor, Connecticut on March 08, 2013:

I think my grandma used to have a hanging fuchsia plant. I never knew fruit grew on it, though! It would be interesting to try it.

Suzanne Ridgeway (author) from Dublin, Ireland on December 08, 2012:

Hi Letitlalicious,

Thanks so much for commenting here, appreciate your enthusiasm for Fuchsia! South of France sounds great for fuchsia and the fruit so do enjoy when you get there!!

Letitialicious from Paris via San Diego on December 08, 2012:

This is wonderful news. I'm very excited about it. Though I live in an apartment in Paris, I'm hoping to have a house in the South of France before too long and have been looking into edible plants. How fortunate that fuschias, which I love, are among them!