Soft Pink Astilbe ‘Europa’

Astilbe \'Europa\' and impatiens fiesta white

Astilbes add a feathery softness to the shade in the summer. Astilbe ‘Europa’ is a medium sized perennial with soft pink plumes. The fluffy plumes look good above the foliage, which stays healthy and green, as long as they get enough moisture.

This is a great flowering plant for medium shade. Only a third of the plumes have opened, but already it is looking good. They would probably get even more blooms in a light shade or sunnier location, but I’m happy with how well it does in the medium shade. The flowers of Europa are a beautiful, clear pink, without purple or peach tones. The light coloured flowers are very noticeable in the shadows. I like how they look with the fiesta white double flowering impatiens. Sometimes I’ve planted a pale apple blossom pink double flowering impatiens with them too. The plumes look pink for about 3 weeks and then start turning brown. This is one of the few perennial blooms that I still like the look of after the flowers lose their colour. I leave the astilbe plumes on until next spring. Like the Hydrangea flowers, they add interest over the winter.

Astilbe \'Europa\' plume

The foliage looks good, green and healthy, and I find it stays that way, as long as it gets enough water. These astilbe plants get about an hour or so of direct sunlight in the early morning, and then a bit of dappled and indirect light for the rest of the day. This probably helps them from getting too dry, I haven’t watered them for a month, but the rain has been very accommodating this summer.

The plumes of this perennial open from the bottom up. In this closeup, it’s easy to see the delicate pink of the astilbe flowers, and the top still waiting to open.

Astilbe \'Europa\' closeup of plume

My Astilbe arendsii ‘Diamant’ and A. simplicifolia ‘Hennie Graafland’ are barely beginning to open, and not ready for their closeup yet. They should be adding their showy white and pink blooms to the shade soon too. You can read more about these other astilbe in another post I wrote.Do you grow astilbes, and do you have a favourite?

14 thoughts on “Soft Pink Astilbe ‘Europa’”

  1. I have to replant some astilbe in my garden. I have had it before but it was planted on the opposite most unused side of the house. It dried out and died. Try, try again as they say.

  2. Perennialgardenlover, my blooms get concentrated into a shorter flowering period. The astilbes would have had more trouble shrugging off the snow than the early bulbs did in April.
    It is a nicely coloured flower.

    Mother Nature, with our cooler summers, the foliage probably lasts longer. If I grew it in a hotter climate, it might like it closer to the water tap.

  3. I have 3 — one pink and two white (exact type unknown). My favourite is a white one which is growing in a cement planter surrounded by creeping jenny.

  4. I love astilbe. I usually focus on drought tolerant plants, but I wonder…if I planted this on the shady side of my house right by the rain barrels I could probably pull it off. Hmmm….

  5. You are right, that is a soft beautiful pink. Sigh, Not here though, there’s that needing water! So I will enjoy their feathering plumes and lovely color from here;)

  6. Hi there. Like you, I love Astilbe. My favourite in the garden is Astilbe x arendsii Fanal, which has dense, short erect spikes of deep crimson red. It seems to light up a shady corner and looks stunning under my Dicksonia antartica.

    I love your blog. You garden in conditions so different from mine (I’m in southern England) that I’m completely hooked! By the way, have you ever tried Astrantia? They do well in shade, but might need protection in your winters.

  7. Gail, bright sun with little rain would indeed make astilbe crispy. I’m fortunate here, that July is usually our wettest month. I don’t water the lawn, and for the past month, I’ve just had to water this year’s transplants in the garden.

    Catherine Kenny, The Fanal sounds good.
    I would love to plant astilbe under Dicksonia antartica. I have to plant Matteuccia struthiopteris and squint my eyes to pretend it’s a tree fern. Right now that’s even harder. Since I transplanted 2 of the ferns, one is leaning at a precarious angle and both are browning back from the tips.
    I don’t have any Astrantia, but I think it is hardy here.

  8. I love the color of your Astilbe–pretty, pretty pink. Do Astilbe’s tolerate hot weather like mine? I have lots of shade, but thought it might be way too hot for them.

  9. Hello fellow gardeners,
    I have a beautiful white and pink astilbe that a week ago were lovely. I am not sure why but they now have no colour. They are both exposed to the sunshine and I am wondering if this is the cause of the colour leaving them. I live in Eastern Ontario Canada and I lately our temps have been in th high 80’s to mid nineties. Does anyone know if there is anything I can do to bring back the colour? I would really appreciate any info on this as I would love to have them in colour again. Thanks all and happy gardening!!!

    1. Marianne, usually the Astilbe only bloom brightly for a couple of weeks, and then they start to fade to brown. I leave the faded flowers on, as they look decorative over the fall.

      They also don’t like to dry out, though. If it’s hot, they appreciate part shade, especially afternoon shade. Putting some mulch around them can help them conserve moisture, too. If the leaves start to get crispy on the edges they need more water.

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