nico6196(Z5a)July 1, 2007

I purchased an Astilbe x arendsii 'Erica' last year and I have noticed that it flowers a different color than what was on the plant tag. My plant tag shows a pink color but it actually flowers a really, really pail pink (almost cream color). Could the tag have been wrong or is there something missing from the soil that is causing this? Any ideas?

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The colour of the plant tag may have misled you. The Erica does not bloom in what I term to be a real pink, but more of the colour which you describe.

Unfortunately plant tags and photos in gardening magazines and catalogues are sometimes not the true colour of the plants. This is expecially true when the colour blue is involved.

    Bookmark   July 1, 2007 at 12:46PM
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sunny_megs(z5a ONT)

At least yours are flowering:-( I got mine last year and they are in a semi-shady garden. They are still very small, no flowers at all. When I got them they were a lot bigger than what they have grown to this year. I seem to have no luck with them. This is the tird time I have tried them, in three different gardens, and still no luck.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2007 at 11:10PM
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Make sure they are in moisture retentive rich soil. Mulch them as well. Keep them away from midday sun.

Moisture is the key. My soil is a bit clayish in an area where I have about 20+ Astilbes which were started from seed. The clay holds the moisture, but I also mulch with good compost every spring, and so the soil has begun to enrich itself. You can also try giving them a feeding of bonemeal. But make wure their roots never dry up in the first year or so.

Once established, they will be fine. Resist the temptation to move them, but also remember that they do need to be divided every once in a while, all depending on how quickly they grow. If you see them starting to decline after a few good years, that's the time to divide.

There are also some Astilbes which are tougher than others in terms of not being as fussy about watering and sun/shade requirement. These include the Arendsii and Chinensis, both of which come in varying colours and sizes.

It's a great plant. Don't give up!

    Bookmark   July 4, 2007 at 10:43PM
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