Tips On Feeding Astilbe: Learn About Fertilizer For Astilbe Plants

(Image credit: derketta)

Astilbe is a fantastic flowering plant for hard to fill parts of the garden. It prefers shade and moist, loamy soil, meaning it can go in those areas where other plants often languish. Unlike the ferns and mosses you might normally plant there, however, astilbe also produces vibrant, beautiful fronds of flowers, bringing color to those dark areas. What’s more, the fronds will dry and last into the winter, making for an even more welcome splash of color. How can you make sure you’re getting the most out of your astilbe blooms though? Keep reading to learn more about how to fertilize astilbe plants.

Fertilizer for Astilbe Plants

Feeding astilbe is a very low impact process. Astilbe is a perennial and it really only needs a yearly application of a basic slow release flowering perennial fertilizer. Flowering plants need phosphorus to bloom, so look for a fertilizer for astilbe plants with a middle number that’s at least as high as the other two numbers, like 5-10-5 or 10-10-10. Simply sprinkle a handful of granules on the soil. If you’re planting for the first time, rake your fertilizer for astilbe plants into the soil a couple weeks ahead of time. Once your astilbe are planted, mulch them heavily to help retain soil moisture.

How to Fertilize Astilbe Once Established

Once they’re established, you should be fertilizing astilbe plants with the same perennial fertilizer once every spring. Push aside the mulch and rake your fertilizer into the soil. Try to do it when the soil is moist but the leaves of the plant aren’t. If the plant is wet, the fertilizer is more likely to stick to it, which can be harmful to the plant and cause chemical burns. That’s pretty much all there is to it. Astilbe fertilizing doesn’t get much simpler than this!

Liz Baessler
Senior Editor

The only child of a horticulturist and an English teacher, Liz Baessler was destined to become a gardening editor. She has been with Gardening Know how since 2015, and a Senior Editor since 2020. She holds a BA in English from Brandeis University and an MA in English from the University of Geneva, Switzerland. After years of gardening in containers and community garden plots, she finally has a backyard of her own, which she is systematically filling with vegetables and flowers.