Astilbe, False Spirea

This herbaceous perennial has fluffy spikes of white, pink, red or purple flowers in the summer. Most of the species which are native to Korea, China and Japan have delicate, compound leaves with the exception of A. simplicifolia which has simple leaves.

The species seem to be tolerant of sun or shade and will thrive in moist conditions near ponds or streams. About the only condition they do not tolerate well is hot, dry. Species and cultivars can vary in height from 8-12 inches up to 40 inches.

From the Greek for "without" and "brightness".

Astilbe x arendsii Hybrid Astilbe
A. astilboides Goatsbeard Astilbe
A. chinensis davidii
(A. darkii)
David Astilbe
A. chinensis var. pumila Dwarf Astilbe
A. x crispa  
A. japonica Japanese Astilbe
A. x rosea Rose Astilbe
A. simplicifolia Star Astilbe
A. taquetii  
A. thunbergii  

Species Height (in) Flower
A. x arendsii 24-48 Late Spring Various
A. chinensis var. pumila 8-15 Summer Red-pink
A. x rosea 24-36 Summer Salmon, pink
A. simplicifolia 12-18 Summer Pink, white
A. taquetii 'Superba' 24-48 Late Lilac

* Guides and Keys are from the book "Herbaceous Perennial Plants A Treatise on their Identification, Culture and Garden Attributes" by Dr Allan M. Armitage of the University of Georgia. Varsity Press, Athens, Georgia. 1989 ISBN 0-942375-00. More on Dr Armitage and his other books.


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