How to Care for Astilbe Visions


Visions is a cultivar of Astilbe chinensis, also known as false spirea. Gardeners value Astilbe visions for its tolerance of shade, attractive plumes of raspberry-colored flowers and bronze-green, fern-like foliage. Native to areas of Asia and North America, the plant thrives in USDA hardiness zones 4 through 8 with only minimal care. Visions reaches up to 1.5 feet in height, and gardeners often plant these flowers in borders along streams or ponds and in shady flower beds throughout the garden.

Step 1

Plant astilbe visions during spring in a location that receives partial to full shade. Spread a 2-inch layer of organic compost over the planting site and use a garden tiller to work it into the soil to increase fertility and drainage. Space the plants 12 to 24 inches apart.

Step 2

Water once every five days during the first month of growth to help establish the plant's root system. Reduce the watering frequency to once every week thereafter to prevent the soil from drying out completely.

Step 3

Feed Astilbe visions twice a year, once during spring and again during summer, using a 5-10-5 NPK fertilizer. Water the soil immediately after fertilizing to release the nutrients. Apply according to the instructions on the package for the best results.

Step 4

Spread a 3-inch layer of mulch over the soil surrounding the plants during late fall, just before the first frost of winter. Replenish as necessary throughout the winter months. Remove the mulch during late winter, before new growth begins in spring.

Step 5

Check plants regularly for powdery mildew and spider mites. Astilbe is generally pest and disease resistant, but may develop problems if ideal growing conditions are not met. Spray with insecticidal soap if a spider mite infestation develops. For powdery mildew, remove infected foliage.

Step 6

Divide Astilbe visions once every three to four years in spring or fall if plants become crowded. Dig up the plants, making sure to free the roots from the ground completely. Remove any damaged or dying roots, separate crowns with a shovel and replant slightly deeper than originally planted.

Tips and Warnings

  • Do not remove faded blossoms from Astilbe after flowering, as they will dry and remain attractive through winter. These dried flowers also help protect the plant during cold weather.

Things You'll Need

  • Organic compost
  • Garden tiller
  • Fertilizer
  • Mulch
  • Insecticidal soap


  • Cornell University Flower Growing Guides: Astilbe, Chinese
  • Maryland Cooperative Extension Fact Sheet: Astilbe Production and Consumer Care
  • "New York Gardener's Guide;" Ralph Snodsmith; 2004
Keywords: astilbe visions, Astilbe chinensis, care for astilbe visions

About this Author

Willow Sidhe is a freelance writer living in the beautiful Hot Springs, AR. She is a certified aromatherapist with a background in herbalism. She has extensive experience gardening, with a specialty in indoor plants and herbs. Sidhe's work has been published on numerous Web sites, including