General Characteristics: Prefers a moist, slightly acidic, rich humus soil away from afternoon sun. Wilting and dying back can be avoided in hot, dry periods with ample irrigation. Periodically feed with a 5-10-5 fertilizer following label instructions. You can also mulch with well composted manure over Winter. Divide every 3-5 years. Attracts butterflies & hummingbirds and is a good cut flower. The flowers and foliage of the Astilbe are good for cutting and may be used in fresh floral arrangements. The flowers are good for drying. In order to keep Astilbe looking good for the next year, do not cut it back in the winter, (the old foliage helps protect the plant from winter damage), but prune in early spring. Astilbe can be used in perennial borders or shade gardens with Hostas and Ferns and alongside water areas.