Astilbe Key West

Astilbe Key West

Lovely in Flower, Leaf, and Seedpod!

Item # 41319

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Here's an Astilbe like no other you have grown. The foliage changes colors from spring through summer. The blooms are super-abundant and brilliantly colored. The seedheads are attractive right through fall. And the habit is compact, dense, and lovely!

In spring, the new leaves unfurl bright red, quickly turning to deep green with red to burgundy edges. They are glossy and prominent, and from a distance can look more purple than green. They keep this color play all season!

Beginning in early summer, bold red buds burst into deep raspberry-pink blooms. The flowers are far more abundant on Key West than on older Astible varieties. Triangular and very bright, they keep coming all summer. Cut some for the vase, and let the rest glow in the garden!

And as the flowers pass, they are replaced by handsome seedheads. These make excellent everlastings, but also look great in the border. Birds may come to visit them, just as butterflies stop by the flowers for a quick sip of nectar in summer.

Just 16 to 18 inches high in full bloom, Key West is no more than a foot wide. This means you can grow it easily in containers as well as the garden. Like most Astilbes, it tolerates full sun only in the far north, preferring dappled sunlight to partial shade in most climates, and tolerant of deeper shade.

Key West is a seedling of the popular variety Sprite, from the simplicifolia species. Most of us are more familiar with A. arendsii and A. chinensis varieties, so here's a quick summary of simplicifolia: the foliage is much glossier and is lobed, not divided, so you have long, pointed leaves with interesting spikes -- very showy. The habit is much shorter. The seedheads are very handsome, adding an entire extra season of beauty to the plant. And this species takes much longer to mature, so you won't find Key West "fully grown" for several seasons, but it WILL bloom before it's mature.

The one absolute requirement for growing Key West successfully is consistently moist soil. This is a thirsty plant. It also likes good, rich soil and it does need good soil drainage to keep its roots from rotting, but consistent moisture is the biggest key. Given this, it will grow and bloom happily for many years to come! Zones 4-9.