Tuesday, July 22, 2014

'Erika' Astilbe: Featured Plant of The Day

Astilbe x arendsii 'Erika'
    Astilbe,  False Spirea

Type    Perennial
Hardy range    4A to 9A
Height    24" to 30" / 60cm to 75cm
Growth rate    Average
Form    Irregular or sprawling
Exposure    Partial shade or partial sun to full sun
Persistence    Deciduous

Bloom Color    Pink
Bloom Time    Summer

The flowers are fragrant, suitable for cut flowers and suitable for dried flowers.

This plant will grow in moist to wet soil.
Suitable soil is well-drained/loamy.
The pH preference is an acidic to neutral (less than 6.8 to 7.2) soil.

Leaf Color    Green
This plant has attractive foliage.

Culture Notes
Astilbes vary in size, bloom shape, bloom color, bloom time and leaf color.  Although frequently categorized as a shade plant, they can grow in full sun in moderate climates, but require a rich, moist, acidic soil and some protection in the warmer climates.   The flower heads last longer if they are planted to avoid the afternoon sun.  Cultivars Cattleya, Granat, and White Gloria have glorious bloom heads, and Fanal has dark bronze foliage.  Fluffy spikes of colorful, elegant and lacy foliage occur during June and July, for the most part.  Astilbes are excellent when used in flower arrangements, either fresh or dried.

'Erika' is somewhat unique with its long, slim, compact trusses and bronze foliage.