Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Astilbe Straussenfeder 'Ostrich Plume'

Today's featured garden choice is the Ostrich Plume Astilbe. I chose this astilbe because of it's uniqueness amongst the other varieties. I remember seeing it years ago when I had my landscaping business. I walked into a local grower's nursery and saw this astilbe blooming in one of their perennial borders. It was magnificent and definitely a showier version of it's siblings. I instantly fell in love! I inquired about it and the grower told me that it was hard to find because people don't realize it's ethereal quality. So....... most growers won't take the risk of it not selling to local garden centers. Hmmm...isn't that what life/business is all about?..taking risks? I digress. The reason I like it, as with most plants I choose, is because it is different from what everyone else likes. I like popular plants as much as anyone but I tend to drift towards what no one else seems to have the imagination to try. :)

This astilbe is hardy from zone 4 thru 8. It grows to a higher height than most, 2~3ft high with a 1~2 ft spread. Per photo, this astilbe grows in clumps and the large, loose, weeping panicles of pink bloom June thru July on arching stems. Stunning!! Like all astilbe this one prefers a part to full shade position in your garden with moist, humusy, organically rich soil. Whatever you do, the astilbe must not be allowed to dry out because the leaves will start to curl and turn brown....that's just uncalled for ugly. You will be able to tell when this astilbe needs to be divided because it will produce fewer flowers and leaves. Normally...most perennials like to be divided every 3~4 years so you should have a gardening bible, of which I call a calendar, to know when anything has been planted.

I do hope you will experiment with this beautiful gem and as alway....Happy Gardening!


1 comment:


the city planted some white ones, not far from here, & i see those every morning. pretty!!