What we love about growing astilbe
- Bright and showy bee and butterfly attractor
- Long-lasting large, fluffy, feathery plumes
- Wonderful cut flowers
How to grow astilbe or false goatsbeard flowers
Often called False Goatsbeard or False Spirea, Astilbe is native to the mountain ravines and woodlands in Asia and North America. These hardy perennials have been cultivated by gardeners for many years for their fern-like foliage and feathery plumes of brilliantly colored flowers that dance in the breeze. Below the flowers grows lush green foliage that adds an airy quality. Some species of Astilbe even have a pleasant and strong aroma. There are over 25 different varieties of Astilbe, assuring there is a color and characteristic for any garden.
What are companion plants for astilbe?
If you have a shaded spot where you are hoping to plant astilbe, it pairs well with hostas and ferns. For sunnier areas, peonies, salvia and other sun-loving perennials make good companion plants. With its long-lasting flowers, astilbe is also a great addition to bee and butterfly gardens. Astilbe make excellent border plants, and is a great candidate for mass planting that really makes a bold statement. Astilbe also makes wonderful pond-side plants, providing an inviting habitat for dragonflies and hummingbirds. Regardless of where you decide to plant, astilbe is sure to brighten and dress up any space in your yard.
Proper care for astilbe or false goatsbeard
Planting and growing is easy provided that the proper location is selected. With the right conditions, astilbe will thrive and provide a whimsical look to your planting area. When choosing a location, it is a good idea to select soil that is loose and high in organic matter. Adding compost is a good way to improve the soil, while helping to retain moisture. Once you have selected the perfect variety and appropriate location, plant your roots in holes that are about twice as wide as the roots and about 4 to 6 inches deep. The tops of the roots should be about one inch below the soil line. Be sure to provide enough water for your plants. We recommend watering your astilbes deeply when the soil appears dry. Some gardeners like to apply a liquid fertilizer in June and July to speed up growth. Established plants can be divided after about four years. DIviding and replanting helps to prevent overcrowding.
For more information about planting, growing, and caring for Astilbe roots, see our Astilbe Bulbs Planting Guide.