Astilbe plants are attractive herbaceous perennials producing tall, fluffy flower plumes above frilly, fern-like foliage from late spring through the summer. It's commonly known as False Goat's Beard based on the appearance of their flowers, which are available in a range of flower colours from whites to dark purples, mainly in pastel colours. Astilbe like the shade but their flowers are most productive if they get some gentle morning or dappled sun for a couple of hours a day. Spent plumes can be cut back in the autumn or left alone for winter interest. They come in a range of sizes from dainty varieties suitable for the front of a border to taller specimens reaching up to 2 metres tall, which make a stunning focal point for the summer flower garden. Astilbe are perfect for bringing colour and texture to trickier, damp and shady spots of the garden and they're expecially well-suited to woodland-style planting schemes where they combine well with other shade-loving plants such as hostas and hellebores. Easy to grow - just keep them well watered and lift and divide every 3-4 years if needed.