Astilbe simplicifolia ‘Hennie Graafland’

Astilbe simplicifolia 'Hennie Graafland' closeup
Astilbe simplicifolia 'Hennie Graafland' closeup

Astilbe simplicifolia ‘Hennie Graafland’ has very brightly coloured flowers. Not only do they have these showy pink plumes, the plants also have extra shiny leaves, that show up well in the shade. This astilbe blooms a little later in my garden than the other cultivars.

The Astilbe simplicifolia ‘Hennie Graafland’ flowers have an overall bright pink colour, because each section of the plume has a deep rose pink centre, with a soft pink around it. The flowers keep their intense colour for about 3 weeks, and then slowly fade to a neutral tan colour. When fall comes, these brown flower plumes fit in with the natural fall colours. In winter, the naturally dried flowers provide interest in the garden, rising above the snow.

The leaves of this astilbe are highly reflective. This glossy foliage is great in the shade, as it adds a bit of sparkle to the darker areas. The leaves makes a great contrast to more matte finished perennial leaves. They do like some water, if you’re walking by with the hose. The moisture keeps their foliage nice and fresh green. These astilbes are in  a medium shade area of the garden, which helps them conserve moisture, without too many top ups.

These short astilbes look good at the front of the shade border. The Hennie Graafland plants are 30 cm (12 in) tall, and the flashy flower plumes grow up to 45 cm (18 in) tall. I have a group of three of these perennials that make a good showing together.

Astilbe simplicifolia 'Hennie Graafland' plants
Astilbe simplicifolia 'Hennie Graafland' plants

Hennie Graafland astilbe bloom a couple of weeks after my Diamant and Europa astilbe. They extend the astilbe flowering time in my garden, as the other ones are fading.

Astilbe simplicifolia ‘Hennie Graafland’ is a nice little perennial for the shade garden. When in bloom, it’s a little more flamboyant than most shade plants. The polished leaves are attractive all season, and the vivid pink flower plumes really brighten up my August garden.

12 thoughts on “Astilbe simplicifolia ‘Hennie Graafland’”

  1. I am always looking for shade plants and love astilbe. I love that this one blooms later and also has glossy leaves. I just have to look into getting this one. Thanks for posting it.

    1. Lona, I should have included a better picture of the leaves to highlight how nice they look. In an earlier post on foliage, there is a leaf closeup of this Astilbe in the last photo on the right, second from the bottom row. The picture looks like I used a flash, but it’s just reflecting the sunlight.

  2. What a beautiful Astillbe (love the way the word rolls off the tongue!). The lower height is charming, and the pink plumes are delightful. I would absolutely add this specimen to my garden, and will be sure to keep an eye out for it. :)

  3. Northern, it is wonderful to be able to enjoy your astilbe flowers. Most of mine quite blooming a long time ago; only one little miniature (‘Pamela’) bloomed until just recently. Aren’t they such a beautiful addition to the shade garden? :-)

    1. Shady Gardener, the Hennie Graafland is the last of my Astilbe to bloom. I have them next to an Aruncus, and the flowers really show up well, against the green background. I might divide them this fall to make a larger group.

    1. The Garden Ms. S, I like the the lacy foliage too. The rest of the plants in this section flowered earlier, so it’s nice to have the astilbe flowers waving in the breeze.

  4. Lovely photos of Astilbe I do like them but have to take great care to water during our dry summers. INteresting about the dried flowers and snow.

    I have been so busy catching up on the garden since my two weeks away that and Lyme awareness with so much happening I haven’t been blogging for ages but thought I’d wisk through a few old friends.

    1. Joanne, I find if I keep the Astilbe in at least medium shade, they do fairly well. Some of them have mulch too, which seems to help them keep hydrated. The astilbe and hydrangea flowers are my favourites to leave on for winter interest.

      I hope that everything in your garden did well during your absence. After two weeks without daily walkabouts, you would really notice the changes.

  5. It’s a lovely pink and would be a fine addition to this shade garden…if it could take the heat! I’ve heard that A chinensis might tolerate the weather here…have you any? Gail

    1. Gail, I have A. simplicifolia, A. arendsii, and the ‘Europa’ might be A. japonica, but I haven’t grown any chinensis yet. The astilbe would probably appreciate the damper area of your garden. Their extravagant plumes add a little light texture to the shade.

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