Friday, 25 May 2012

Zone 3 Flowers: Chinese Astibe

Description: Astilbes are mainstays of shade and woodland gardens. They are clump-forming perennials which feature graceful, fern-like mounds of mostly basal, 2-3 ternately compound leaves, usually with sharply-toothed leaflets, and tiny flowers densely packed into erect to arching, plume-like flower panicles rising above the foliage on slender, upright stems. Chinese astilbes are slowly spreading, rhizomatous plants

Hardy: Zone 3

Bloom Time: May to August

Height: 10-12''

Spacing: 1 1/2 feet

Sun Needs: Part shade to full shade

Water Needs: Medium

Outstanding Features: Mass or group in shade gardens, woodland gardens and shaded areas of border fronts or cottage gardens. Drought tolerance and dwarf size facilitate use in shaded areas of rock gardens. Excellent spreading ground cover or edging plant for shady areas. Also effective on pond or stream banks.

Uses: Cut Flower, Ground cover, Rain Garden

Tips: Tolerates: Dense Shade, Black Walnuts, Deer, Rabbits. Removing faded flower stalks will not prolong bloom but may improve plant appearance, particularly if a ground cover look is desired. On the other hand, many gardeners leave the flower stalks in place after bloom because of the continuing ornamental interest of the dried seed heads. Divide clumps when overcrowding occurs (every 3-4 years).

This is what mine looks like so far this season. It's getting there!
(I bought it on sale because it was looking a little sad, but I've nursed it and it seems to be doing well!)

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