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Nuances of growing astilba: tips for newbies

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Astilba refers to the popular plants for the garden. Its prevalence is due to lush long-term flowering and resistance to high soil moisture. Large spreading bushes always look very impressive.

Astilbe is a herbaceous plant whose homeland is considered to be East Asian countries and North America. About 40 species are represented in the genus, which are subdivided into at least 400 varieties.

Plant height is 15-200 cm, depending on the variety. The inflorescences are quite long: from 10 to 60 cm. The flowers may have different shades: white, purple, pink and red. Flowering occurs from June to August.

In fact, it is a rhizome plant, in which the land part dies off at the beginning of winter. Astilba leaves are simple, long-pebbly or jagged, reddish or dark green. Rhizome is dense or loose. Every year, several buds appear on the plant, and its lower part dies off. Astilba is growing fast. So, for the year its height increases by 4 cm, so with the onset of winter it is necessary to pour a little bit of soil.

Growing astilba does not cause any trouble. Plants are planted in the period from May to June in the northern part of the site. It must be remembered that the bushes don't need much light. Best of all is scattered shadow. Thanks to the creation of such conditions, it will be possible to achieve stable long-term flowering, although the variety Gloria and others with white flowers feel well in the sun. Of course, in this case, the flowering will be shorter, but much more intense. Early and late varieties grow well in the sun and in the shade. The ideal option for all varieties is the proximity of water, such as a pool or a fountain.

Almost any soil is suitable for astilbe. To bloom was long, it is better to give preference to a place with a high level of groundwater, because bushes can not tolerate a long drought. In the upper layer of soil should be a lot of phosphorus and potassium. Also suitable loamy soil with an acidity of 5.5-6.5.

Many gardeners choose astilba for their plots. Growing plants requires prior preparation. So, before planting it is important to dig up the area, remove weeds and rhizomes from other plants. Then the soil is fertilized with compost, rotten peat or rotted manure. For 1 m², approximately 2 fertilizer buckets will be required. Then it is necessary to dig pits with a depth of 20 cm at a distance of 30 cm. Each spoon should be filled with 1 spoon of mineral fertilizer and 0.5 cups of ash. It is necessary to carefully place the root of the plant. All plants should grind with peat or humus. 3-5 cm layer will be enough. Thanks to mulching, it will be possible to avoid overheating and preserve the looseness and moisture of the soil.

Breeding

Experts allocate 3 ways of plant reproduction:

  • Dividing bush. This is the most familiar and common method. So, you need to carefully dig up the bush and remove all the leaves. Then, cutting is performed into several delenki, each of which should have 3-5 buds. Dead rhizome must be removed. All plants are planted in the ground. At the same time there should be a distance of 30 cm between them. The division is recommended in the beginning of spring. Thanks to this early reproduction, the first flowers will appear in autumn.
  • Kidney reproduction. This is the fastest way. With the beginning of spring, when the shoots begin to grow, they should be carefully cut along with part of the rhizome. Themselves slices sprinkled with coal powder or ash. The shoots are placed in a container with peat and gravel in a ratio of 3: 1, and then covered with a film. Astilbe can be landed in the fall or wait until the next spring.
  • Seed propagation. This method is not suitable for propagation of varietal plants, since they are unable to retain the characteristics of the variety. However, you can grow astilba, acquiring quality seeds. They are sown in a moist soil without deepening in the ground. To accelerate growth, stratification is preliminarily performed. So, the seeds are cleaned in a cold place where the temperature does not exceed + 4º C, and after 20 days the container with planting material is transferred to a warm lighted room, where the temperature is maintained at 18-20º C. In the spring, the plant can be planted in open ground in a darkened area.

Astilba care is quite simple. The plant loves water, so for him is very regular abundant watering is important. Even if the soil is slightly dry, it can adversely affect the decorative properties. For example, the inflorescences will become smaller, and the leaves will start to wither.

It must be remembered that astilba is adapted to severe frosts, but spring temperature fluctuations can be disastrous. Therefore, the bushes need to cover with any natural material in several layers, and between individual plants is to mulch the soil, using pine needles.

To preserve the beauty of astilba, fertilizer should be applied. For dry land suitable peat or compost, and for wet - complex additives. Immediately after flowering, you need to make a phosphorus-potassium composition. Fertilizing with nitrogen is carried out after frost. Ideal period is May-June. It is best to give preference to urea with the addition of potassium or ammonium nitrate. At 10 liters of water will need about 2 spoons of fertilizer. Under the bush you need to pour about 0.5 liters of the finished solution. Potassium chloride is undesirable to contribute.

Some gardeners prefer to use an infusion of weeds, namely dandelions. Other experts choose AVA fertilizer. It is made three times a year, 1 teaspoon around the roots. It must be remembered that nitrogen is not represented in this fertilizer; therefore, in early spring, the soil needs to be poured with Gumi solution or a fertilizer fertilizer.

One bush lives about 5 years. After that, the plant needs a transplant. If desired, do not dig up the bush, but separate part of it, process the cut, and then fill the vacated space with soil.

Combination with plants

Astilba looks very good in mixed flower beds located on a darkened area. The best neighbors are considered hosts. In sunny areas, bushes are often combined with daylilies. If you pick varieties with different flowering periods, you can create a flower gardenwhich will please the eye for a very long time.

Astilba goes well with colors that love shade. For example, it is badan, hellebore and podofillum. You can also plant in the neighborhood lilies of the valley, irises, Goryanka, late tulips.

Main varieties

The number of hybrid varieties of astilba totals about 200 copies. The most popular are:

  • Astilba Leasing. Powerful bushes reach a height of 100 cm. They have a pyramidal shape, dark green leaves and white, red, pink or purple inflorescences. Flowering is observed during the month: from July to August.
  • Chinese astilba. The height of the bush reaches 1 m. A distinctive feature is the presence of large leaves at the root. Inflorescences are quite dense, and small flowers have a pronounced lilac shade. Also there are white and pink flowers.
  • Japanese astilba. These are low plants with compact openwork leaves. Inflorescences have a white or pink shade. They bloom quite early. However, even after flowering, such a bush will decorate the site.
  • Astilba Prostolistnaya. Low plants differ in their spectacular colors. It should be remembered that they do not tolerate high temperature and dry air.

Almost all varieties of astilbe are not afraid of pests and diseases. Thus, in the course of numerous studies, not a single insect or disease was discovered that would significantly damage the plant. Due to this, care and cultivation of the bush is greatly simplified.

Choosing the right landing site

Despite the need for large amounts of heat, open sunny areas with maximum sun should be avoided. Cultivation of astilba in open ground should be practiced in areas with sparse shadow, because only in this case it will bloom profusely and for a long time.

The exceptions are light varieties that feel great in the open sun, but delight in flowers a little less. Early and late varieties grow well under sunshine, and those species that bloom in July should be planted in the shade.

How to prepare the plot

Before planting astilba on the selected area, it is necessary to dig up, removing the rhizomes of other plants. Then the soil should be fertilized with rotted manure or peat at the rate of 2 buckets of fertilizer per square meter. Make sure that the topsoil is sufficiently saturated with potassium and phosphorus. Bone meal (2 handfuls per meter) or complex fertilizers (30 gr. Per meter) are added to the beds. Try not to plant a plant near trees with a shallow root system. They may have competition for moisture, in which the flower will surely lose.

Landing technology

Planting is carried out in the fall, at a time when the average daily temperature of 2–3 weeks is no less than 5 ° C. Choosing the distance between the bushes, focus on the type of plant. So, low varieties are planted at a distance of 30 cm from each other, and high - 50 cm.

For the landing they prepare holes up to 30 cm deep, at the bottom of which lay fertilizer and pour water. Delenki (part of the bush with rhizome), placed in the hole and covered with mulch about three centimeters.

Watering: what it should be

In the care of astilba, it is important to provide her with a sufficient amount of moisture, with regular watering. Even a small delay and short-term drying of the soil lead to the fact that the leaves wither, the inflorescences become smaller, the flowers lose their richness of color, and the plant itself takes on a somewhat sloppy look.

Weeding and loosening the soil

Astilba perfectly suppresses weeds, as it has very powerful branchy rhizomes. But while the plant is young, weeding is simply necessary for it, since fragile flowers have a hard time fighting weeds. After rain and watering, it is advisable to loosen the soil around the astilbe so that the crust does not appear. However, if it is mulched, then these manipulations will not be required.

By the way, thanks to the mulching with peat and annual hilling, it is possible to slow down the aging of the bush, because the buds will be under the ground all the time.

When and how to feed

To preserve the decorativeness of the plant, it is also necessary to feed astilbe. It is carried out every year, but the choice of means for feeding depends on the land in which the plant was planted. So, if it was planted in wet soil, complex additives should be used, and potash and phosphate fertilizers - after flowering. If the plant is planted in dry land, then take peat or compost.

Separate fertilizers are used for a specific result. For example, to keep leaves and petals juicy, use diluted manure or other organic fertilizers. It is added at the beginning of the sap flow, that is, in the spring. To the plant developed well, make mineral fertilizers. It is important to observe the correct concentration: 25–35 grams per liter of water. This fertilizer is applied in the fall before wintering. Potassium sulphate or urea with superphosphate will help increase the period of flowering and give the plant pomp. These mixtures must be added to the beds in the summer.

Seed collection

It is necessary to collect flower seeds in the fall, when the plant fades (usually in September). Despite the fact that they are quite small, it is easy to assemble them. Faded and dried inflorescences should be cut, wrapped in paper and put in a warm place. After two weeks, it is enough to shake the inflorescences, and the seeds of them will pour out. Astilba seed storage is carried out in a paper bag.

Astilba preparation for winter

Astilba spends wintering without problems. She perfectly adapted to the severe frosts, but temperature fluctuations during the spring period can be dangerous for her. therefore it is better to mulch, covering two layers of natural materials. It can be sawdust, small pebbles, last year’s lovely leaves, straw, bark, fir twigs, or other materials. Between the bushes and the soil should be mulch, for which spruce branches are perfect.

In addition to heating the plant in winter, mulching helps to preserve the friability of the soil, its moisture, and also reduce overheating in the summer.

Basics of proper transplant

It is possible to engage in plant transplantation both in early spring and in autumn. This is done as follows. A hole is dug in advance, then a shrub is carefully taken and put into it. The hole should be large enough so that the roots of the bush can be freely spread in it. The plant must be covered with earth, water and mulch. The last manipulation helps to preserve precious moisture and prevent the appearance of a crust, which is very undesirable for a young plant.

The combination of astilbe with other plants

In terms of "friendship" with other plants, astilba is undemanding - it coexists well with the other "inhabitants" of the garden. therefore It is worthwhile to select neighbors for purely aesthetic reasons. So, astilba openwork leaves look great in combination with whole leaves of hellebore, podophyllum or bergenia. From flowers, the plant can be combined with a bath, irises, late tulips, mountain flowers, lilies of the valley.

As a rule, it is planted on stony hills, in ridges along lawns, off the coast of water bodies and half-shaded mixborders.

Methods of reproduction astilba at home

Astilba is reproduced in one of three ways: seeds, buds or division of the bush.

With the help of seeds, the plant is propagated exclusively for breeding. It does not make sense to collect seeds of hybrid varieties in my garden, as they quickly degenerate. However, you can purchase high-quality varietal seeds for planting on your site.

To improve seedlings, seed must be properly prepared for planting. To do this, the seeds are placed for 20 days in a place where the temperature is kept at +/- 4 ° C. Then transferred to a well-lit warm room with a temperature of 18-22 ° C. Seeds are sown on moist soil, and after the procedure, the soil is not buried. After a couple of weeks, small shoots should appear that can be planted in shaded beds. It is important to constantly observe watering.

Cuttings

By astilba grafting is meant its reproduction by the kidneys, which allows you to reproduce the plant much faster than seed. When the shoots grow in spring, they are carefully cut with a part of the rhizome and treated with cuts of ash. The resulting cuttings are planted in a mixture of gravel and peat (1: 3) and covered with a transparent material, for example, plastic wrap. The depth of planting should correspond to the size of the root, but so that the kidney is half a centimeter covered with soil. Shank rooted about a year. That is, it will be possible to land it in the open ground the next spring.

Dividing bush

In most cases, using this method of reproduction, as the division of the bush. To this end, in spring, while the plant has not yet blossomed, or in the autumn after its flowering, the leaves are cut, a bush is dug out and divided into so-called delenki. Each of them must include at least one faded stem on 3-5 buds. You can use and not faded stems, but in this case you should not expect flowering next year. Delenki are planted at a distance of 30 cm from each other, not forgetting to water them regularly.

Astilba resistance to diseases, how to treat them

The plant is very resistant to disease. With proper care, it is extremely rarely sick, but the pests on it like to settle. For example, often it will attack slobbering penny which begins to occupy the plant with the axils of the leaves. Moreover, insects themselves do not bear any particular danger, since their larvae bring much greater harm, which grind off the green part of the plant, leaving it without oxygen and the possibility of further growth. You can fight them only by manually removing the nests.

Also dangerous gallic or earth nematode. This parasite settles on the rhizomes of plants at temperatures above 20 ° C and high humidity. You can determine its invasion by the appearance of the bush - it begins to turn yellow. Fighting a pest is not easy and most often gardeners prefer to dig up a bush with the surrounding land and completely destroy it so that the parasite does not spread to other plants. You can also try to clean the rhizome well from the ground and rinse it in warm water (50-55 ° C).

Astilba is a very beautiful, gentle and undemanding plant. A huge selection of varieties allows you to choose the shade that is most suitable for your garden. The most important thing in the care of a flower is to ensure that it is sufficiently watered and to prevent the soil from drying out. Astilba is reproduced simply enough, so you can always have new cuttings for planting.

Brief description of the plant

Astilbe (Astilbe) - herbaceous plant of the stone-heel family. The homeland of this decorative perennial can be considered Japan, East Asia and North America. The genus includes about 40 species and more than 400 varieties. Astilbe height varies from 15 to 200 cm. Flowers are gathered in panicle-shaped inflorescences 10-60 cm long. Окраска может быть разнообразной: особенно привлекательно выглядят цветки белых, красных, розовых и фиолетовых оттенков.Large leaves form a laced shade of dark green, burgundy, bronze color. The fruit is a box with small seeds. Flowering time is June-August.

Planting astilbe

The right choice of place and time for landing will guarantee that the astilba will quickly take root.


Planting astilbe

The growth rate depends on the availability of heat and moisture. High astilba varieties are planted at a distance of 50 cm, low - up to 30 cm from each other. Before planting, it is necessary to dig up the ground, remove the rhizomes of weeds and fertilize astilba with compost, decomposed peat and rotted manure (2 buckets per 1 sq. M). More information about planting astilba will tell the article Step by step: choose and plant astilba.

Growing conditions

Astilbe don't need a lot of light for rapid growth. Best of all she feels in a thin shadow. In such conditions, flowering will be long and abundant.


Astilba feels best in thin shadow

Although varieties with white and light pink flowers (Weiss Pearl, Gloria, Bergkrisstal and others) feel excellent in the sun. Flowering in this case is shorter, but twice as intense.

Most importantly, do not forget about mulching (covering the surface of the earth) with bark, straw, small pebbles, sawdust, or other materials. Mulching helps not only to reduce overheating, retain moisture and soil looseness, but also creates comfortable conditions for wintering the plant.

What should be the soil?

When choosing a site for planting, consider the time at which a particular type of astilba blooms. For example, mid-blooming (July) specimens prefer shaded corners, late and early varieties bloom for a long time both in the sun and in the shade. Astilba grows well on any soil, but if you want to achieve long flowering, then places with high groundwater will be the best conditions for achieving the cherished goal. Long-term drought can not tolerate the plant.

Very important the amount of potassium and phosphorus in the upper layer of the earth. Breeding fertilizers (30 g) and bone meal (2 handfuls) can be poured into breeding beds (1 m long). When planted in a flower garden, small pits are dug (no more than 30 cm deep), the above-mentioned fertilizers and flour are poured into them, and humus is also added. Everything is mixed and filled with water. Delenkas (parts of a rhizome with buds) are filled with mulch (3 cm).

You can choose astilba saplings in our catalog, which includes offers from various online stores. Choose astilba seedlings

Flowerbed companions

Gardeners plant astilba together with coniferous and ornamental deciduous shrubs, create original platforms around the perimeter of water bodies, combining varieties adjacent in color and height.

Low-growing perennials successfully manifest themselves as a pot culture, and dwarf astilbe perfectly take root on the rocky areas of rockeries or rock gardens.

Stunted A. Arends "Fan" opens flowering season

Astilbe is comfortable with the following plants tolerant of a lack of sunlight:

It is noteworthy that even the absence of astilba flowers will not make such a bed boring. The leaves of the "neighbors" are distinguished by a unique decorative shape and different colors. At the same time all the plants for life is enough to see the sun only at sunrise or closer to sunset. Moisture, scattered shadow and minimal care are all that is needed for the healthy growth and prosperity of astilbe.

Typical company for rock garden

Growing seed crops at home

Astilba is propagated by vegetative means and seeds. Beginning growers prefer the first method. The second one often raises a number of intractable questions like “how to collect and germinate tiny seeds”, “when to sow for seedlings”, etc.

Many experimenters are stopped by a low percentage of germination of astilbe (which is often indicated on the packaging label), as well as possible problems when transplanting seedlings into open ground. Agree, it is much easier to buy ready-made roots with buds in the nursery and not bother with the unnecessary hassle of creating a greenhouse, stratifying and picking young plants, and then moving the astilba to a flower bed.

However, those who love to risk, often receive a well-deserved reward. It is the seed method of growing astilbe that allows you to become an amateur breeder, experiment and get an unpredictable result - new varieties.

On a note! The polymorphic properties of astilba lead to natural consequences - the seedlings partially retain the characteristics of the mother plant. Be prepared for the fact that breeding white undersized flower seeds, in the end get a tall perennial with pink panicles.

Astilba seeds for seedlings are sown in early March. A mixture of peat and sand (in parts 3: 1) is placed in a wide tank with a height of 15 cm. A handful of snow is scattered on top, and small seeds are distributed on it. Thus, conditions are artificially created to stratify seeds and increase their germination. Together with the melting snow astilba penetrates the soil.

1 g of perennial inflorescence contains about 20 thousand of the smallest seeds, invisible to the naked eye

Then the pot is placed in a transparent bag and sent to the refrigerator for 15-20 days. At the expiration of the specified period, the “greenhouse” is taken out, carried out in a warm (+18 degrees), well-lit place, for example, on a balcony. Astilba shoots should appear within 3-4 weeks. It is impossible to prevent the soil from drying out; use a gun for moistening it.

Perennial seedlings grow very slowly. If necessary, sprouts dive into separate containers after the appearance of 2-3 leaves. Practice shows that in most cases a full-fledged socket barely has time to form by the end of the year, and therefore the astilba is transplanted into the open ground only next spring.

Young bushes will not throw out the first flower stalks no earlier than in the third year of life.

Astilba landing methods

There are several options for breeding astilba at the dacha:

  • planting seeds in open ground,
  • planting seedlings, personally received at home,
  • rooting of perennial delenok (kidney renewal).

The greatest discussions among flower growers cause the first two methods, the last one doesn’t cause much trouble and 99.9% gives a good result.

How to root renewal buds purchased in February and when astilbe should be planted in the ground is discussed in detail in the video on the Garden World website:

Astilba loves soft and loose loam

Mulching allows you to retain moisture in the soil, but is not able to saturate the soil with oxygen. Spring and summer rains thicken the earth, making it difficult for plants to "breathe."

Loosening allows to increase the air permeability of the soil around the astilbe, and to combat weeds. The event is useful to spend 2-3 times per season.

During loosening the soil is not turned. The main task is to destroy the crust on the surface of the hole. The procedure is carried out carefully by an ordinary pololnik, focusing on a depth of 5-10 cm.

Ash is used every time when planting seedlings and delenok

How to grow a healthy and strong plant? You just need to root a high-quality seedling in the ground, create a shaded environment and ensure a regular flow of moisture to the roots. Astilba will grow, blossom and delight the gardener's eyes.

To say that perennial vital needs regular feeding can not be. However, pampering your favorite bush with “goodies” is also not prohibited.

Gardeners feed astilba 3 times a year: in the spring - with nitrogen fertilizers, in June (when it blooms) - with complex complexes, until August 10-15 - with phosphorus-potassium compounds, ashes. In the latter case, the resistance of the plant to pests and diseases increases, as well as its winter hardiness.

The reason for the division of rhizome and transplant time

In auspicious atmosphere astilba soon grows. The root neck for a year rises above the ground by 3-5 cm. At first, it is necessary to pile it up (sprinkle with soil), otherwise the perennial will stop blooming. After 4-5 years, the plant must be transplanted.

The peculiarity of the astilbe rhizome is such that the growth of renewal buds takes place not horizontally, but vertically, and at the very surface of the earth. If young roots remain without a ground cover, they will die: dry out in summer or freeze in winter.

Astilba is sold in nurseries

On a note! The grinding of peduncles and perennial shrubs is a direct signal that the root collar and shoots are exposed.

At one place astilba can grow up to 20 years. However, in this case it is better not to wait for a lush vegetative mass and large panicles. If the gardener wants to increase the decorativeness of the bush, it should regularly (with a frequency of 3-4 years) divide the rhizome into parts and transplant delenki to a new place of residence. This is the most common way of breeding astilba and a separate story that deserves attention. The benefits of the event are obvious - there are more flowering bushes, the garden is more beautiful.

It is believed that the best period for transplantation is spring (without frosts) or autumn (end of August - September). Astilba delenki before wintering should have time to take root. To reduce the stress of a transplanted plant, greens can be sprayed with epin or phytosporin. Adaptation will be faster and with minimal losses.

On a note! Horticultural practice has shown that, in spite of literary instructions, astilbe roots take root at any time during the active growing season, even during the flowering period!

How to care for the transplanted delenka? In a familiar way:

  • maintain soil moisture by mulching
  • feed after thriving thrice a year
  • cut discarded flower stalks 1 time after transplanting, to allow the plant to get stronger.

Astilba preparation for wintering

In mild climates and abundant snow bush can not cover

Caring for a plant in the fall provides for a number of activities:

  • fertilizing with phosphorus and potassium,
  • updating the mulch over the rhizome,
  • slice dried and lost decorative greenery,
  • frost cover if necessary.

Astilba stems are cut almost at the root. On top of the "stumps" spud and cover with a layer of mulch from 5 to 20 cm. Hay, leaves, sawdust, peat, lapnik are used.

In the fall, these materials will protect the soil and astilbe roots from weathering, as well as leaching from heavy rains. In winter, the shelter will eliminate the risk of soil freezing, becoming pledges for the healthy development of the bush for the next season.

Practice has shown that astilba is not prepared for winter in warm regions. Works are reduced to restoring order in the garden. In the Far East, in areas with harsh winters, it is better to play it safe and “warmly” to shelter perennial. Then in frost and snowlessness you can fall calmly.

Posted by: Maria Thunder

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