Astilbes are one of the easiest perennial flowers to grow. They have long-blooming, plume-like flowers in soft shades of white, pink, and red, and the flowers are held on tall, stiff stalks above the airy foliage.
Astilbe plants are also known as false spiraea, false goat's beard, and meadowsweet. There are several species and cultivars within the Astilbe genus, with variety in the flower plumes. Most of the popularly sold Astilbes are hybrids resulting from crosses among the species. Astilbe is valued for bringing great long-lasting color to partly sunny borders, where tall colorful flowers are few. In addition, Astilbe provides a nice textural contrast to plants with large, broad leaves such as heuchera, hosta, and Ligularia. Astilbe can also be grown in containers.