Growing astilbe from seed

Contents

Astilbe Seeds – Astilbe Arendsii Bunter Flower Seed

Flower Specifications

Season: Perennial

USDA Zones: 4 – 8

Height: 28 inches

Bloom Season: Summer

Bloom Color: Mix

Environment: Partial shade

Soil Type: Evenly moist soils are preferred, pH 5.5 – 6.8

Deer Resistant: Yes

Planting Directions

Temperature: 65 – 70F

Average Germ Time: 28 – 35 days

Light Required: Yes

Depth: Do not cover

Sowing Rate: 3 – 5 seeds per plant

Moisture: Keep moist until germination

Plant Spacing: 28 inches

Care & Maintenance: Astilbe

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Astilbe (Astilbe Arendsii Bunter) – If you have shady areas that need some color, start some Astilbe seeds and brighten things up! What a variety of colors: violet, red, pink, cream and white as well as dark green, serrated foliage. It’s a shade lover that makes a nice cut flower for fresh or dried bouquets! Astilbe Arendsii is perfect for the shady bed or border. It’s a midsummer bloomer that goes well with hostas, ferns, and other shade plantings. Astilbe plants do best in moist (not wet) soils. They require rich soil with lots of compost or humus mixed in. In the north they do best in part shade with more sun than shade and in the south they do best in more shade than sun. They are not full shade plants because they will not flower well with out adequate light. Under poor light conditions they will grow into green clumps but flower poorly.

Astilbe flower seed is usually sown indoors in early spring and transplanted outside when the weather is warmer. Use a loose, soft soil mix, and plant the Astilbe seeds on the surface, pressing them into the soil. Make sure that the soil drains well and is able to keep the flower seeds moist, but not wet, at all times. For the best results, add in a little fertilizer that has a high concentration of nitrogen. Keep the Astilbe plants inside until the seedlings reach about 2 inches in height. Transplant after last frost.

Astilbe Propagation Methods – How To Propagate Astilbe Plants

Astilbe is an outstanding shade perennial with tons of charm from its lacy foliage to its fuzzy flower heads. Astilbes are planted from roots that sprout out of eyes, much like a potato. Because they grow from these root structures, it is easy to divide and propagate these plants. Division is the fastest of the astilbe propagation methods and will result in plants the following season. You can try growing seeds, but dividing astilbe is a more stable and a faster method for producing plants. Knowing how to propagate astilbe is easy and adds more of these enchanting plants to your garden.

How to Propagate Astilbe with Seed

Astilbe grow from rhizomes, which produce the shoots and blooms of this lively shade plant. You may also choose to grow astilbe from seed, but the results are variable, blooms take many seasons to produce and the plants tend to be short lived. For faster plants and bigger bloom displays, the best way of propagating astilbe plants is through division. It is an easy process and the results are better parent plants and babies to dot around the shady areas of your landscape.

Most plants start out as a seed but due to many variables, the results may not be true to the parent plant. Also, plants that are derived from rhizomes, corms or bulbs need many seasons to mature fully

and produce flowers. This is why most gardeners choose to start such plants from purchased bulbs or rhizomes. Such starts cut the time in half or more for mature plants.

Astilbe seed is available or you can save your own. This is one of the less reliable astilbe propagation methods and the size and vigor of the resulting plants may not match that of the parent. Still, if you have free seeds, start them indoors in flats and see what the outcome will be. After all danger of frost has passed, transplant the seedlings to a protected, partially shady area of the garden in well amended soil that is loose, nutrient rich and well draining.

Dividing Astilbe Plants

Astilbe plant propagation is quickest and easiest by separating rhizomes and planting them separately. Adult plants perform better if divided every 3 to 4 years. Propagating astilbe plants through division is best done in late fall or very early spring when plants have died back or before they have sprouted.

Mark the area in the garden for spring division so you can find the exact location of the rhizomes. Dig around the edges of the astilbe plant to prevent damaging the rhizomes for a better chance at getting healthy new rhizomes. Gently unearth the rhizomes and pull them away from the main body of the root structure. Choose healthy, undamaged rhizomes.

Prepare the bed carefully by digging at least 6 inches deep and adding compost, leaf litter or other soil amendment. Consider the lighting of the new location. Astilbes prefer shade to partial shade and will burn in full sunlight.

Care of Newly Divided Astilbe Rhizomes

Good cultivation and care are the key to successful astilbe plant propagation. Plant the divisions at the same depth in which they were harvested. Space rhizomes 16 to 30 inches apart and pack soil firmly around the new plants.

Use a fertilizer with a high phosphorus and potassium number as compared to nitrogen.

Keep the new plants moderately moist but not soggy. During summer, supplement moisture during dry periods.

It is a good idea to use an organic layer of mulch around the planting zone to prevent weeds, conserve moisture and enrich soil. Keep an area around sprouts free of mulch to prevent rot and allow tender shoots to easily break free.

You may see flowers in the first year or just the lacy, delicate foliage. By year two, the plumes will form and mature, good sized plants will be produced. Astilbe plant propagation from the rhizomes is quick and easy and you can even save the fall harvested rhizomes in well-draining containers indoors over winter for spring planting.

Astilbe Seeds – Astilbe Chinensis Flower Seed

Season: Perennial

USDA Zones: 4 – 8

Height: 18 – 24 inches

Bloom Season: Summer

Bloom Color: Pink

Environment: Partial shade

Soil Type: Well-drained, pH 5.8 – 6.8

Deer Resistant: Yes

Temperature: 65 – 70F

Average Germ Time: 28 – 35 days

Light Required: Yes

Depth: Do not cover

Sowing Rate: 10 – 12 seeds per plant

Moisture: Keep moist until germination

Plant Spacing: 12 inches

Care & Maintenance: Astilbe

Astilbe (Astilbe Chinensis) – Growing Astilbe seeds is a wonderful way to liven up shady areas with plumes of color. Astilbe Chinensis is the gardener’s best friend for breaking up the monotony of various shades of green in the shady garden. Astilbe plants are strong, robust shade-lovers that produce extremely large pink plumes. They are quite tall plants, averaging around twelve to eighteen inches in total without flowers and with flowers they can grow as tall as 2 feet. Due to their graceful height they are often placed in areas of the garden that will use their height to advantage, such as a bordering plant or to line the side of a fence.

Often known as Astilbe False Goat’s Beard, this perennial is not a difficult plant to grow from flower seed as long as you know the soil, water, temperature, and sun requirements. For optimum growth, you should plant Astilbe in average soil in an area that gets good drainage. It’s important that the soil has good drainage because excessively wet soil could cause the roots to rot away. These plants are not very resilient against excessive heat or sunlight, therefore the area that you plant your Astilbe in should ideally receive partial shade. Astilbe flower seeds are usually sown indoors in early spring and transplanted outside when the weather is warmer. Use a loose, soft soil mix, and plant the Astilbe seeds on the surface, pressing them into the soil. Make sure that the soil drains well and is able to keep the flower seeds moist, but not wet, at all times. For the best results, add in a little fertilizer that has a high concentration of nitrogen. Keep the Astilbe plants inside until the seedlings reach about 2 inches in height. Transplant after last frost.

Shake ‘n Seed – We are now offering shaker bottles filled with our seed starting matrix: rich soil, gardening sand, water absorbing crystals, and starter fertilizer. This not only helps dispense your seed, but it gets it off to a great start! Simply remove lid from shaker bottle, add seed from packet, put back on lid, shake the bottle vigorously for 15 seconds, and then shake your way to beautiful new plants! Use Shake ‘n Seed over good quality soil, and then gently water to keep seed moist until it sprouts. Great for ground covers or mass planting flower seeds.

How to Plant Astilbe Seeds

Astilbe flowers are beautiful perennials that come in shades of white, red, pink and lavender. Astilbe flowers make a great addition to any colorful flower garden or landscape. Astilbe flowers are very easy to plant from seed, and don’t require a lot of care and maintenance in order for them to grow tall, proud and produce many beautiful flowers. So, here is a convenient step-by-step guide on how to grow beautiful astilbe flowers from seed.

Step 1 – Purchase Astilbe Seeds

Visit your favorite nursery and purchase the appropriate astilbe seeds for the variety you want to grow.

Step 2 – Prepared the Astilbe Seeds

Before your plant the seeds, you should show the soak them in water for about 24 hours.

Step 3 – Preparing the Potting Soil

Astilbe seeds are usually sowed inside the home in early spring and transplanted outside when the weather is warmer. Usea loose, soft soil mixed with considerable portions of humans or peat moss. Make sure that the soil drains well and is able to keep the seeds moist, but not wet, at all times. For the best results, add in a little fertilizer that has a high concentration of nitrogen and add quality commercial seeding soil nutrient solution.

Step 4 -Planting the Astilbe Seeds

Plant your astilbe seeds at a depth of about one quarter of an inch below the surface of the soil. Keep the astilbe plants inside until the seedlings reach about 2 inches in height.

Step 5 – Choose an Outdoor Location

Choose a shady area of your yard to transfer the astilbe seedlings to. Astilbe doesn’t do very well in direct sunlight, and should be always planted in relatively shady areas.

Step 6 – Prepare the Soil

Prepare the soil by turning in some good quality fertilizer with a high concentration of nitrogen as well as cow manure or a super phosphate. Make sure the soil drains well; if it doesn’t, consider adding sand and gravel to improve the drainage.

Step 7 – Plant the Seedlings

Plant the astilbe seedlings no more than a couple of inches below the surface of the soil. Make sure to space the seedlings about 16 inches to 30 inches apart to ensure adequate root system growth and to avoid overcrowding.

Step 8 – Add Mulch

Spread quality organic mulch around the seedlings leaving about an inch or two around the seedling itself free. Quality organic mulch will help retain moisture in the soil and also act as a fertilizer as it decomposes.

Step 9 – Add Fertilizer

Apply an good all-purpose fertilizer that has a high concentration of nitrogen.

Step 10 – First Watering

Water the astilbe seedlings thoroughly, but make sure to not add so much water that the ground cannot probably absorb it.

Step 11 – Continue Fertilizing

Continue fertilizing your astilbe plants about once a month to ensure vigorous growth and more beautiful blooms and flowers.

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ASTILBE X ARENDSII

It took me far too long to discover the beauty and special quality of the shade garden. Since I’ve always been into those tough, hard-scrabble plants that eke out a living in any condition, the idea of a garden full of particular and at times sensitive plants was not of interest to me.

But as I’ve gotten older, I’ve discovered a keen appreciation for these gardens and the plants that call them home.

Perennials like heuchera and painted ferns opened up a previously unappreciated collection of foliar colors, while flashy and bright annuals like torenia added lovely splashes of color.

Of all the plants in the shade garden that earned my affection and appreciation, the astilbe (A. x arendsii) comes in at the top of the list.

The foliage itself is interesting and worthwhile, but it’s the large flowers that really make them sing. As an added bonus, they seem to enjoy being placed in a wet corner of the yard – what more could we ask for in a shade perennial?

We’ve prepared a helpful and informative overview of growing, establishing, and maintaining astilbe. We’ll also take a look at some nice cultivars that you can add to your own garden. Keep on reading to delve into awesome A. x arendsii!

Hello, Nice to Meet You

If you aren’t already familiar with this lovely perennial, it’s time for some introductions:

A flowering perennial that reaches heights ranging from one to six feet, astilbe spreads via underground rhizomes.

It’s a relatively slow-growing perennial that will fill in a space that you’ve chosen for it nicely, when given enough time. For the gardener who wants to see results sooner than later, it is suggested that you purchase some container plants from a reputable seller.

Keep reading for a few of our suggestions so you can pick out a few for your garden right away.

Because it spreads via rhizome, you’ll be able to dig up and divide A. x arendsii every 2 to 4 years. I’ve worked in gardens where we dig out large clumps and are able to divide them into over a dozen plants.

The ideal time to divide astilbe is in early autumn, after they’ve finished flowering.

The foliage of astilbe can vary between cultivars, but it’s generally an emerald green in the spring with a bronze tone that becomes more pronounced as the temperatures heat up. It is a basal plant, so the foliage tends to come up from a single point of origin at the base of the plant.

In addition to adding compost to amend the soil regularly – twice a season is a good interval, in both spring and fall – astilbe benefits from springtime fertilizing as well.

These plants enjoy a fertilizer with a high phosphorus content, to encourage their blooms and root development. This springtime feeding is key to developing those great blooms and heights A. x arendsii is famous for.

A well-fed and happy clump of astilbe.

Because they’re at their best in shady areas with moist soil, these plants are prone to a few problems. But they are otherwise surprisingly resistant to pests. Powdery mildew and cercospora leaf spot can kill astilbe if left untreated.

Bacterial leaf spot is an unattractive disease that affects astilbe, but it is rarely fatal. Instead, it limits the growth of the affected plant. Most gardeners will just let it go, but copper fungicide has been shown to make a marginal dent in the spread of this disease.

Powdery mildew on a tomato leaf.

The tarnished leaf bug is another pest that is attracted to astilbe, but it is likewise not a serious threat. Simply picking the bugs off and dropping them in soapy water is the preferred control method.

Providing the Right Home

Astilbe is at its best when in a slightly acidic soil that is consistently moist. This quality makes these perennials perfect for that low corner of your yard that gets a consistent flow of run-off during the summer.

They make excellent additions to a bog garden as well, where there is ample organic matter and moisture for them to gobble up.

They’ll grow their best when given plenty of water, but they don’t like “wet feet.” That makes good drainage essential and also means heavily clay soils are a no-go for these plants. Too much moisture during the winter will also stress and harm the rhizomes of astilbe.

Regular additions of compost will aid in providing a fertile environment for astilbe, and also helps improve the soil quality of the garden.

By amending your soil, you can make a more hospitable home for A. x arendsii if your intended location is less than perfect. Put in the extra effort to create an ideal site with good drainage, plenty of organic material, and consistent moisture, and you’ll find your astilbe at their happiest.

A fan of dappled shade, A. x arendsii will suffer and crisp up in full sun, but also fail to reach their full flowering peak if located in deep shade.

If astilbe receives 4 to 6 hours of sun a day, it will put on its wonderful flowered show. If planted in deep shade it will still fill your garden with lovely foliage, but few flowers.

Garden Buddies

Astilbe are rather hardy in the winter. They tend to grow in US Hardiness Zones 4-8, though some cultivars are capable of holding on all the way down through Zone 3.

Springtime feeding helps to establish the roots needed to make it through the winter.

Leaving the flowers and foliage standing through the winter helps to ensure a smooth transition from winter to spring, and the flower heads can add special interest and a meal for hungry birds.

Astilbe surrounded by companion plants including leucothoe, hosta, Japanese sedge, and painted ferns.

Thriving in shady, regularly moist areas offers A. x arendsii plenty of planting companions. Hosta and iris are natural pals, along with heuchera and trillium. Impatiens and begonias are some classic shade-lovers that are paired well with astilbe.

Consider the use of moss and ferns as well. If you have a spot for A. x arendsii, it’s almost guaranteed that moss and fern will establish themselves readily.

As far woody shrubs are concerned, azalea and rhododendron go hand in hand with astilbe. They prefer the same type of light, favor slightly acidic and regularly moist soil, and have complementary bloom colors.

Varieties and Where to Buy

Many species of astilbe were cultivated by just one man in Germany. His name was George Arends, a master hybridizer who in a single year developed a stunning 74 new varieities of the plant.Each cultivar below has its own description so you can find the right plant for your yard, and a handy-dandy link that you can follow to purchase your very own.

Remember that astilbe tends to prefer well-drained and rich soils. Maintain a spacing of about eighteen inches between plants so they’ll have room to spread and fill out. Adequate spacing also helps to minimize the risk of diseases caused by poor air circulation.

Visions in Red

Talk about red. ‘Visions in Red‘ adds something just shy of firetruck red to boldly stand out from the cooler colors in the shade.

‘Visions in Red,’ available from Nature Hills Nursery

The flower plume will grow more intense in color until it reaches its peak in mid-summer, but the bronzed foliage is yours to enjoy for the rest of the season. Reaches a height of about thirty inches.

Little Visions

If you’ve got an ambition to add some pink to your garden, ‘Little Visions’ in Pink is the plant for you. Hirt’s Gardens offers live plants in quart-sized pots.

‘Little Visions’ in Pink, available on Amazon

The color falls somewhere shy of bubblegum, but because it blooms in early to mid-summer, it adds a complement to redbuds and the maturing foliage of hosta and other shade plants. Reaches a height of about sixteen inches.

Fanal

A nice, deep red is complemented by the lovely display of emerald green foliage astilbe is famous for.

The ‘Fanal’ variety is acceptable in a wider growing range than is typical for this perennial, and it may thrive in Zones 3-9. Blooms in late spring to mid-summer and reaches a total height between eighteen inches and two feet.

‘Fanal’ Bare Root Starts, available on Amazon

Available from Classy Groundcovers via Amazon in packages of 10 bare root plants, note that this vendor cannot ship to Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, or Washington.

Bridal Veil

A favorite choice of mine for customers’ gardens, ‘Bridal Veil’ is about as delicate a flower as they come.

‘Bridal Veil’ Astilbe, available from Nature Hills Nursery

Lacey foliage in a deep and saturated green hue serves as the base for creamy, all-white flowers that live to surf on the breeze. Reaches a height of up to twenty-eight inches and blooms throughout the summer.

Visions in White

If you’re looking for more of a porcelain white than what the Bridal Veil offers, check out ‘Visions in White.’ The foliage is a bronze-green.

‘Visions in White’ Astilbe, available from Nature Hills

As an added bonus, ‘Visions in White’ can bloom all the way into the fall in the right conditions. Reaches a height of about thirty inches.

Delft Lace

Blue-green foliage pairs with the almost apricot flowers of ‘Delft Lace.’ The foliage is notably rougher looking than most A. x arendsii and adds interesting texture to the garden.

Live ‘Delft Lace’ Plant in Quart-Sized Pot, available on Amazon

If grown in full sun the flowers will suffer, but the foliage takes on a stronger red color. Blooms late spring to early summer and can reach two feet in height.

Peach Blossom

You know to expect warm tones and colors from a cultivar called ‘Peach Blossom.’

Live ‘Peach Blossom’ Astilbe, Quart-Size Pot, available on Amazon

The – you guessed it – peachy-pink flowers offer a bit more warmth than what’s typically seen in A. x arendsii. Expect these to bloom from early to mid-summer and reach up to two feet tall.

Showstar Seed Mix

Feeling up to a challenge? Give growing astilbe by seed a shot with the ‘Showstar’ Mix, available from True Leaf Market.

‘Showstar’ Mix Astilbe Seeds

Although quick to establish itself and spread to fill in an area, astilbe grows slowly from seed and can take a few years to blossom. Still, we’re gardeners; patience is part of the game, right?

This variety will reach a height of nearly three feet.

Onward to the Shade Garden!

Shade gardens are where it’s at when it comes to subtlety and cool color transitions.

It’s an ideal place for the gardener to spend a summer afternoon with a book and a cup of coffee or tea. Introducing the right plants and combinations can turn that little corner of the yard into a lovely outdoor room.

Although there may be sweeps of hosta and brunnera that dominate the edges, it is the addition of colorful shade-loving perennials like astilbe that will make the area sing.

The colors of these flowers may tend to fall into a narrow area, but new cultivars are being developed that add some warmth and beauty to the shade.

As always, we’re eager to talk shop and answer further questions in the comments section. Drop us a line below!

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Product photos via Hirt’s Gardens, Nature Hills Nursery, True Leaf Market, and Classy Groundcovers. Uncredited photos: .

About Matt Suwak

Matt Suwak was reared by the bear and the bobcat and the coyote of rural Pennsylvania. This upbringing keeps him permanently affixed to the outdoors where most of his personal time is invested in gardening, bird watching, and hiking. He presently resides in Philadelphia and works under the sun as a landscaper and gardener, and by moonlight as a writer. An incessant questioning of “Why?” affords him countless opportunities to ponder the (in)significance of the great and the small. He considers folksy adages priceless treasures and is fueled almost entirely by beer and hot sauce.

Astilbe growing: planting and care

Written by Joan Clark Feb 28th, 2019 Posted in Garden

Astilbe is a representative of the genus of herbaceous perennials in the family of Saxifragaceae, and, according to different sources, it comprises from 18 to 40 species. “A” means “without”, “stilbe” means “brilliance”, that is, Lord Hamilton, a botanist from Scotland, when giving the name to the plant, referred to matte, dull astilbe leaves. Astilbe is native to East Asia, North America and the Japanese Islands. It grows in broad-leaved forests, along the banks of streams, in places where it is humid in summer. Astilbe was brought to Europe from Japan at the end of the 18th or the beginning of the 19th century by the hunters for unusual plants Carl Peter Thunberg and Philipp Franz von Siebold, and since then it has been a favorite of all the shady gardens.

Description of astilbe flower

Astilbe is a rhizome plant, the aboveground part of which dies in winter. The stems of astilbe are upright, ranging from 3.1 inches to 6.6 ft in height depending on the species or variety. Leaves are long-petiolate and can be either simple, or twice or thrice pinnate, dentate. The color is dark green or reddish green. The rhizome of astilbe is woody, and depending on the species it can be loose or dense. Every year, new buds are formed on the upper part of the rhizome, the lower part gradually dies. The annual vertical increment is approximately 1.2-2 inches, so before winter the exposed rhizome should be covered with a fertile soil.

Astilbe flowers are the apical inflorescences consisting of small lacy flowers in shades of white, red, lilac, pink, purple and blooming in June-July-August. Inflorescences are paniculate, rhombic and pyramidal. Species with drooping inflorescences are very spectacular. The fruit of astilbe is a capsule. According to the flowering time astilbe can be early (late June-early July), medium (July), and late (August).

Varieties of astilbe

In cultivation 10-12 plant species are used. Many new hybrids were obtained through breeding. Today the number of varieties has reached two hundred. The most popular hybrid groups are Arendsii hybrids (Arendsii Hybrida), Japanese hybrids (Japonica Hybrida), Chinensis astilbe (Astilbe Chinensis) and its types, and astilbe simplicifolia.

Arendsii astilbe

is represented by forty varieties that are the result of crossing the base species (David’s astilbe) with other species. These are vigorous, spreading, tall shrubs (up to 3.3 ft), of globular or pyramidal shape with dark green leaves and terminal inflorescences of white, lilac, red and pink flowers. It blooms longer than other species, for 30-40 days from July to August. It has been cultivated since 1907, but the best varieties were created by G. Arends. The popular varieties are Gloria astilbe, Diamond, Weisse Gloria, Rubin, Glut and others. Amethyst, Weisse Gloria and Ruby reach 2.6 ft height, Diamond is 2.9 ft high. But while Diamond, Glut and Rubin have paniculate inflorescences, Gloria and Weisse Gloria have diamond-shaped inflorescences.

Chinese astilbe

is a plant up to 3.3- 3.6 ft high. The basal leaves are large, long-petioled. The stem leaves are smaller, with short petioles, shiny and lacy. Inflorescences are dense, 12-13.7 inches in length. Flowers are small, usually lilac, but there are varieties with pink and white flowers. It has been cultivated by flower growers since 1859, and it has dwarf varieties from 6 to 10 inches in height (var. pumila hort.) and varieties with cone-shaped inflorescences (var. Taquetii). This species of astilbe perfectly grow in areas with full sun. The most beautiful Chinese astilbe varieties are astilbe chinensis taquetii “Purpurlanze” of incredible lilac color, pink astilbe chinensis “Vision in Pink”, astilbe chinensis (Pumila Hybrida) “Vision in Red” of dark purple color.

Japanese astilbe

is presented by low (not higher than 32 inches) and compact, with shiny, and, as a rule, ornamental leaves. Paniculate inflorescences consist of pink or white flowers that bloom earlier than other species, and even if faded, they adorn the garden until late autumn. Japanese astilbe has been cultivated since 1837, and the first varieties were created by G. Arends. Modern varieties have excellent cold resistance and perfectly take roots. Among the most popular varieties there are: Deutschland varieties (Astilbe japonica Deutschland) with white flowers, Rheinland varieties (Astilbe japonica Rheinland) with beautiful pink flowers, Europe varieties (Astilbe japonica Europe) with pale lilac elegant flowers, and finally, Montgomery astilbe (Astilbe japonica Montgomery) with fluffy panicles of bright red or burgundy hue.

Astilbe simplicifolia

Hybrids of astilbe simplicifolia and Thunberg hybrids poorly tolerate dry air and heat, and this must be taken into account. Drooping, very spectacular inflorescences make low plants (0.6-20 inches) look feathery. Among the most exquisite varieties of astilbe simplicifolia are Praecox Alba with white loose “candles” of inflorescences, pinkish Bronze Elegans, named after the bronze shade of leaves, as well as coral Straussenfeder 2.9 ft high and white Professor van der Wielen (Thunberg hybrid).

Growing of astilbe from seeds

Astilbe is propagated vegetatively (bush division and separation of the rhizome with the buds) and by seeds. And although inexperienced plant growers prefer vegetative methods, we will tell you how to grow astilbe from seeds, because it is the seed propagation method that allows breeding and obtaining new varieties. Astilbe seeds are sown in March: a mixture of peat and sand (1: 1) is placed in a 6 inch tall and wide container, and covered with 0.4 inch snow (in snowless winter it is possible to get snow in a freezer), on which seeds are scattered. When melting and moistening the soil, snow immerses the seeds into the ground. After snow has melted, cover the container with a transparent bag and place it in the refrigerate for twenty days (this is called stratification) before the shoots emerge, and then transfer it to a light warm (64-72 ° F) place. Be careful with watering, otherwise you will kill seedlings: water under the root or inject water into the soil by syringe. When the seedlings have 2-3 leaves, they are pricked out into small pots to plant them in the ground. We will describe in the next section how to plant astilbe grown from seedlings.

Planting of astilbe

Growing and caring for astilbe are easy, so let’s start with the main thing: planting of astilbe occurs in May-June, choosing the northern side of the house, in the shade of trees or bushes, although some varieties can adapt to a more sunny place and in this case the blossoms will be more vibrant but not so long-lasting. If there is a fountain or a swimming pool next to it, it will be great. It prefers loamy soil with a high groundwater table. Optimal acidity is 5.5-6.5 pH. In the garden astilbe is a perfect companion plant for hostas: the leaves of the hostas retain the moisture in the soil and prevent it from overheating in the heat.

Planting of astilbe in spring is preceded by digging up the site and removing rhizomes of weeds and other plants, then you need to amend the soil with compost, well-rotted manure or rotted peat at the rate of 2 buckets of fertilizer per 11 ft2. Before planting of astilbe, prepare the planting holes that should be 8 inches deep and 12 inches wide at a distance of 12 inches from each other and fill each of them with a half of a glass of ashes and 1 tablespoon of mineral fertilizer, then water them well. Place the seedlings, or rather, the root of astilbe, in the hole so that the soil layer is at least 1.6-2 inches above the buds of growth. Fill the holes with soil, compact it and mulch the area with a 1.2-2 inch layer of humus or peat.

Astilbe – care after planting

The main feature of astilbe is that the rhizomes work their way to the top of the soil and the older rhizomes gradually die back. That is, over time, the root system turns out to be without resources, therefore, earthing up is especially significant for astilbe. Do not let the soil dry up: timely watering is one of the mandatory rules of caring for astilbe. In addition, mulching will protect not only the root system from overheating, but also retain the soil moisture and get rid of weeds without the need of often soil loosening. Astilbe requires from average to heavy watering, depending on the species and variety, but all varieties need regular and plentiful watering during the formation of inflorescences. In a severe drought, water astilbe twice a day – early in the morning and in the evening.

Without being transplanted, astilbe can grow for 5-7 years, but if cared well and with fertilizers applied on time, it can grow in the same place for up to twenty years. In spring astilbe is fed with nitrogen fertilizers (humus is added when earthing up), in mid-June you should use potash fertilizers (2 tablespoons of potassium nitrate per 2.2 gallons of water, 17.6 fl oz of solution per bush), and before flowering you should apply phosphoric fertilizers (0.7 oz of superphosphate per bush). After fertilizing, the soil is loosened and mulched again.

Astilbe, like many other alien plants, left its “enemies” in the place of origin. In cold climate zones it is sometimes attacked by meadow spittlebugs and two kinds of nematodes – strawberry crimp nematode and root-knot nematode. Meadow spittlebug settles in the axils of the leaves and forms foamy salivary secretions, inside of which there are larvae-leafhoppers. The more meadow spittlebugs there are, the more leaves wrinkle and get covered with yellow spots. As a result, the plant withers partially or completely. To get rid of meadow spittlebug you should treat the plants with insecticides or malathion.

Strawberry crimp nematode is a leaf pest, it parasitizes on the buds, leaves and flowers, making them deformed and covered with yellow or brown necrotic spots. The growth of plants is slowed down. The root knot nematode affects the roots, forming small root-knot galls that contain nematodes. Galls become clearly visible in the second term of vegetation. Infected plants develop and bloom poorly, sometimes they even die. It is necessary to detect the plants with obvious signs of infection in time and remove them. In addition, keep watch on weeds in the first half of the vegetation and immediately remove them. In the second half, when growing out, the roots of the astilbe choke up the weeds, and weeding will not be necessary. The plants in the site should be processed with an insecticide.

Astilbe after flowering

When astilbe is done with blooming and the flower stalks begin to dry up, do not cut them off at once, since even half-dry spectacular inflorescences of astilbe will adorn your garden. But at the end of the season, when you have to put things in order on the flower beds before winter, the stems of astilbe should be cut off at the ground level, and the area should be covered up. Covering is especially important for the astilbe grown from the rhizome division. This is done in order to rejuvenate astilbe, since when the root gets woody, it will be difficult to separate them. Therefore, in early autumn, the rhizomes are divided so that each section has a growth bud, then the next year, as a rule, the transplanted astilbe will start blooming.

You just need to mulch the site, and it will be great to place the fir twigs over newly transplanted rhizomes to protect new plants from winter frost and be sure that in spring astilbe will not die from a sharp temperature drop.

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Propagating an Astilbe

Astilbe flowers should be propagated every 3 or 4 years to maintain healthy plants and promote new growth of blooms and flowers. You can also propagate astilbe flowers at other times if you simply want to create more plants. Properly propagating astilbe flowers is not very difficult and anyone can do it. So, here is a handy how-to guide on how to properly propagate astilbe flowers

Step 1 – Know When to Divide and Propagate

It is usually best to propagate astilbe flowers in the late fall after blooms have died or in early spring before astilbe flowers and plants have grown enough to produce blooms and flowers. When propagating astilbe flowers, you don’t need the top parts of the plant so much as you do the crown, stem and root ball. So, even dividing and propagating astilbe plants that are only 2 to 4 inches in height is acceptable and will work just fine.

Step 2 – Dig Out the Astilbe Plant

Use your small garden spade to carefully dig around the astilbe plants to be removed and divided. Make sure to begin digging around the approximate drip line of the astilbe plant as this will probably be the point to where roots have extended to. After you dig out the astilbe plant, gently remove it and carefully remove any loose dirt or soil clinging to the root ball.

Step 3 – Divide the Astilbe Plant

Use your fingers to gently pull apart the crown section and root ball of the astilbe plant. Divide the root ball in quarters if possible. Alternatively, you could use a small pair of scissors for this task.

Step 4 – Choose a New Location

Choose shaded areas to plant your new astilbe divisions. Astilbes will grow better in shaded areas and don’t do so well and direct sunlight.

Step 5 – Prepare the Soil

Turn the soil in the new location with a good all-purpose fertilizer that has a high nitrogen content. Also add a light application of supers phosphate or animal manure to the soil.

Step 6 – Plant the Divisions

Dig holes that are the same depth as used for the original astilbe plants and insert your new divisions in the holes. Pack soil around the new divisions tight enough to keep the plants upright but not so tight as to damage the crown or stem. Also make sure to space your new divisions about 16 to 30 inches apart

Step 7 – Add Organic Mulch

Add 2 or 3 inches of organic mulch around the area of for your new divisions. Make sure to allow enough room around this stems to allow the new divisions to grow properly.

Step 8 – Apply Fertilizer

Apply more all-purpose fertilizer in your new division planning area.

Step 9 – Water the Astilbe Transplants

Thoroughly water the new astilbe transplants, but make sure not to soak the soil too much. Add water in increments and allow the water to soak in to the soil before adding more.

If you need to add some pizzazz to your shade garden, astilbe should be at the top Couple that with the fact it prefers to grow in shaded areas and you’ve got. Pink false spirea (Astilbe) standing in an ornamental garden Propagating Astilbes are one of the easiest perennial flowers to grow. Astilbe plants flower for shade. Planting Astilbe, soil, moisture, mulching, care tips , propagation, division, how to grow Astilbe seed.

Astilbe Propagation Methods – How To Propagate Astilbe Plants. Astilbe is an outstanding shade perennial with tons of charm from its lacy foliage to its fuzzy flower heads. Astilbe grow from rhizomes, which produce the shoots and blooms of this lively shade plant. I didn’t find a single web site that recommends propagation by cuttings, so I’m I’ ll try to remember to tuck in a piece of the astilbe for fun. Why Propagate Plants by Cutting or Layering? These are two easy Astilbe, Early spring before foliage unfolds, Cuttings or division preferred to seed. After first.

Astilbe flowers should be propagated every 3 or 4 years to maintain healthy plants and promote new growth of blooms and flowers. You can also propagate. Astilbe Propagation Methods: How To Propagate Astilbe Plants – You can try growing seeds, but dividing astilbe is a more stable and a faster method for. You can try growing seeds, but dividing astilbe is a more stable and a faster method for producing plants. Knowing how to propagate astilbe is easy and adds .

You need to meet the astilbe flower. If you are propagating from a plant that you’re already familiar with from your backyard, you can expect a. The astilbe plant adds a colorful accent to shade gardens as it produces bright The method of propagation is through dividing the root structure. practices of propagating herbaceous perennials, concen trating on root cuttings . methods of propagate perennials like Astilbe, Hosta,. Hemerocallis, Iris, and.

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