Astilba in nature grows in deciduous forests of North America and East Asia, which is peculiar to the humid climate.
Astilba - a favorite of shady gardens, decorated with showy inflorescences collected from a variety of openwork flowers purple, lilac, pink and white shades
The plant has an upright slender stems, whose height depends on the species can reach a half meters and above.
Woody rhizome plant annually formsnew buds from which grow on stalks spring, with the onset of cold and die. Annual growth of the rhizome of about 5 cm. In the fall every time evolved over the summer, and exposed roots sprinkled fertile soil.
perennial stems are decorated with graceful feathery,dissected or dlinnochereshkovye leaves of dark green color. A complete picture of the apical inflorescence pyramidal paniculate or diamond shape, pleasing to the flowering season for 25-40 days. After flowering the flowers gathered in panicles formed fruit-boxes filled with small seeds.
The landscaping Astilbe used since the beginning of the XX century. With a variety of shapes and rich color palette of inflorescences designers use it to implement the most daring ideas.
Astilbe Bushes appropriate to look at the background of picturesque alpine or group planting conifers with their rich green needle-like leaves
Landscaping often include Astilbe anddesigning artificial ponds, planting perennial as the frame source. Worthy picturesque corner of the addition may make bells Heuchera, daylilies.
it looks harmonious and flowercompositions. A good neighborhood can be obtained by planting near Astilbe shade-loving ferns and hosts. Dwarf varieties of flowering perennial advocate a real gem of a small shady flower garden. In the spring, until the Astilbe have not yet blossomed leaves an empty space around it in a flower bed can be filled with miniature crocuses and snowdrops.
Balance the lacy foliage of perennial plants to help with large thick leaves: host, Rogers, saxifrage, lady's mantle, Solomon's seal, lily of the valley, hellebore
One reason for its popularity is Astilbeability to get along in the shade of trees. Feeling comfortable even in the shade, it never ceases to please the colorful blooms. In the form of cut fine inflorescence Astilbe use when linking to create bouquets and flower arrangements.
In ornamental horticulture, there are abouttwo hundred varieties Astilbe, created on the basis of a dozen species. The most popular hybrid groups are: Japanese Astilbe, Arends, prostolistnaya and Chinese.
Hybrids Astilbe Japanese have a height of 40-80 cm. The stems are decorated with leaves with pronounced patterns whose color ranges from pale green to reddish-brown. Dense inflorescence diamond shape colored in crimson, red and white shades.
The most famous varieties: «Montgomery» with burgundy inflorescences, «Rheinland» panicles with pink-salmon color, «Deutschland» white inflorescences air
Dense inflorescences of plants of this group bloom much earlier than other varieties. Even after drying, they retain decorative decorate flower garden until the onset of winter.
The species is named after its creator breederG. Arends and presented 40 varieties. Height sredneroslye crop reaches 0.6-1 m. The stems are decorated with dark-green leaves with burgundy trim having a spherical or conical shape, and showy inflorescences, cream, yellow and pink shades.
The most decorative different varieties: "Boogie Woogie" with pink buds diamond shape, "Gloria" with openwork foliage and fluffy pink panicles, perennial dwarf "Lilliput" with inflorescences pinkish-salmon color
Prostolistnaya Astilbe not tolerate droughtclimate. It is distinguished by a pale green undivided leaves with a glossy surface and unusual pyramidal inflorescences that resemble drooping panicles.
Most interesting varieties of this group: «Bronze Elegans» with delicate bronze buds, «Straussenfeder» with bright coral flowers, «Praecox Alba» with magnificent white "candles"
Chinese Astilbe is a powerful rhizome,that as sprawl displaces its neighboring plants. Stems perennial, whose height does not exceed 110 cm, decorated with openwork foliage framed by golden hair thin and dense buds Belov, lilac and pink flowers.
The most beautiful varieties are considered to be: «Vision in Red» with bronze-green foliage and purple-red flowers, «Vision in Pink» with blue-green foliage and light pink panicles, «Purpurlanze» with purple flowers on reddish stalks
To decorate the suburban areas is better to choose varieties sredneroslye culture. They are more resistant to adverse climatic conditions.
Numerous cultural varieties of conventionally divided into:
- Dwarf - up to 30 cm.
- Bantam - up to 60 cm.
- Average height - up to 90 cm.
- Tall - one and a half meters.
Different varieties of this perennial differ intiming of flowering: early pleasing flowering in early June, sredneroslye hybrids are arranged bright accents in the middle of summer, and late-decorated garden colorful "torches" towards the end of the season.
At one point shrub can grow up to five years,after which it is required to rejuvenate. Propagation is perennial as the early spring and late autumn, using this method of vegetative or seed.
This method involves dividing rhizomes 2-3parts, each of which has deflorate stem from dormant buds. When breeding vegetatively Astilbe can be planted at any time. The main thing - to provide in the first days after transplantation sufficient moisture.
Not bad take root shrubs and flowering period, subject to all the same humidity conditions.
In vegetative method lignified rhizome dug out of the ground, washed with water and using a shovel or secateurs cut into sections
The rhizome should be divided so that each plot were cut at 2-3 kidney replacement at the base, which later will the young shoots.
The size of the plot is not significant,portion and will be sufficient rhizomes to 5.3 cm long. They are planted at a distance of 30 cm from each other. The next season planted plots are actively in the growth and spread by lush panicles.
This method is quite time-consuming, but it allowsbring new growth. Collect seeds to plant in early September, carefully cutting the inflorescence with boxes. Their spread on paper and left in a warm place for two weeks. To get the smallest peas enough to shake the dried panicles. Collected seeds are placed in a bag and leave until the spring.
When growing Astilbe from seed planting sown in February - March in a container filled with a mixture of peat and sand, taken in the ratio 3: 1.
Seeds have Astilbe are very small and they grow quite slowly, so their pre-stratification is desirable to subject
Seeds are dispersed on the surface of moist soiland cover glass or plastic wrap. At this stage it is important to comply with humidity regime, preventing the soil to dry out. Some growers recommend to use this "snow" from the freezer, which as melting will gradually moisten the soil.
The first shoots appear after 3-4 weeks, butonly towards the end of the season they form a small rosette of leaves. Watering delicate seedlings should be very careful, subtle directing jets of water at the very root.
If the young bushes in the greenhouse are not close to each other, they can not bother until the following spring. bushes grown from seed will please flowering on the third year of planting.
Best of all this culture is growing on loose andslightly acidic soils. Lower acidity to the required level within 5,5-6,5 pH can be achieved by making at digging wood ash or dolomite.
Astilba prefers shaded sites, located a short distance from the spreading crown. The best option - a sparse shade.
When choosing a site worth to focus on timingflowering. The early and late varieties can be placed in the open areas, or in the penumbra. Srednetsvetuschie best planted in shady corners, because the scorching July sun significantly reduces the time of flowering.
Perennial should preferably be such that in all its glory are brought not only the delicate blossoms, but opened his eyes graceful leaves
Astilbe in nature hygrophilous. Most varieties feel comfortable on the marshy ground, quietly enduring stagnant water.
Planting hole is half filled with humus,which thoroughly mixed with the soil. It is worth and organic fertilizers, taking them at the rate of 2 buckets of manure per 1 sq.m. fertilizers. Enriched the land watered. Waiting until it is completely absorbed, planted a plant and sprinkle it with earth so that the layer thickness of replacing kidney was about 4 cm. The soil around the stem seal and to prevent the formation of air niches in the ground, watered again.
To minimize maintenance of this flowering culture, enough to observe a few simple guidelines:
- During the growing season to feedcomplex fertilizers. Ensure root zone soil layer of nitrogen necessary amount of potassium and phosphorus can be when digging in the spring, making the rate of 30g / sq.m. In mid-July, fueling potassium nitrate (2 tablespoons per 10 liters of water.) And last fertilizer after the blooming - superphosphate, distributing it to 20 grams per bush.
- Provide timely watering. Moisture-loving plants can not tolerate long-term drought. On hot summer days, it should be watered two times a day. Especially in the strong culture needs watering during the formation of inflorescences. Watering Astilbe better in the early morning and after sunset.
- Mulching the soil. Save the looseness of the soil and reduce the loss of moisture will help mulching planting area or bark chips. Mulch will prevent the overheating of the earth in the summer and freezing of roots during the winter months.
- Every five years, to rejuvenate the bush. The ability of plant roots quickly build mass requires periodic rejuvenation of the bush. At the end of each season, the bare roots necessarily sprinkle fresh ground. Otherwise, stick out old roots young shoots become bare and dry, which, in turn, adversely affects the quality and duration of flowering.
- Fighting pests. Nematode and slobbery spittlebug - the main pests of plants. They hit the leaves and rhizomes of the plant, causing its wilting and death. Get rid of the nematodes can only completely destroying the affected instance. With spittlebug little easier. Its larvae can try to destroy mechanically, without damaging the roots and stems, or using garden chemicals: konfidor, Akhtar, malathion.
- After flowering cut the flower stalks. But some growers, on the contrary, leave the dried flower stalks are not cut, so that they as long as possible adorn the spring garden.
- Harboring the plant for the winter. In snowy winters the bulk varieties of flowering culture freeze slightly. To prevent it before the onset of cold weather the stems are cut to ground level, the exposed roots of mulch with peat and cover with spruce spruce branches.
In the future, the plant got stronger weed control will perform the self - its powerful roots an excellent job with this task.
Weed this water-loving beauty should be only in the early stages of its growth on the rhizome and build green mass
Finally, we offer to see an interesting video about pruning autumn Astilbe: