5 Plants that Look Like Astilbe 2023 List

Plants that Look Like Astilbe

Astilbe is a well-liked flowering plant that blooms in the summer and is distinguished by its fluffy plumes of pink, white, and red blossoms. 

It is popular among gardeners trying to add color and complexity to their landscape because of its delicate appearance and propensity to grow in wet, gloomy situations. 

But, there are a number of alternatives to take into account if you’re seeking plants that resemble Astilbe in appearance. 

This article’s goal is to provide Plants that Look Like Astilbe and substitute plants that have Astilbe’s delicate beauty and favorable growth environment. 

You can pick the ideal plant to go with your garden and provide your outside area visual flair by looking through these possibilities.

Plants that look like astilbe

Goat’s beard

Plants that look like astilbe: Goat's Beard

The herbaceous perennial plant known as goat’s beard, or bride’s feathers, is indigenous to North America and Europe.

It has tall, straight stems up to 6 feet tall, crowned with plumes of tiny, creamy white flowers resembling astilbe blossoms.

The Goat’s Beard has brilliant green foliage that resembles ferns. It favors wet, well-drained soil, a partial shade over direct sunlight, and both.

Due to its comparable look and growth circumstances to Astilbe, a goat’s beard makes a fantastic substitute.

Both plants feature fern-like leaves and fluffy plumes of blooms in white, pink, and cream hues. While Goat’s Beard often has smaller, more clumped blooms than Astilbe.

Advantages and disadvantages of using goat’s beard as a substitute:


It has a similar look to Astilbe, which makes it an ideal substitute for Astilbe for adding texture and interest to your landscape.

May flourish in surroundings that are comparable to Astilbe, such as some shade and wet ground.

It’s an excellent choice for heightening your landscape because of its greater height.


Because of the smaller bloom clusters, it could not be as spectacular as Astilbe.

Compared to Astilbe, it might be more difficult to locate in nurseries and garden stores.

If not kept up with, it may become invasive, thus regular trimming is required.

Japanese-painted fern

Japanese painted fern

Japanese Painted Fern is a perennial fern that is native to Japan, China, and Korea.

The plant has a spreading, vase-shaped habit and may reach heights of up to 18 inches and widths of 24 inches.

The plant’s foliage, which has fronds that are silvery-gray in color with a faint hint of blue or red, is its most remarkable characteristic.

The delicate texture and beautifully separated fronds offer charm to any garden. The Japanese Painted Fern likes soil that is wet, well-drained, and has come to complete shade.

Astilbe is a perennial plant valued for both its beauty and medicinal properties. Astilbe produces magnificent plumes of pink, crimson, white, or purple flowers that bloom in the middle to end of summer, in contrast to Japanese Painted Fern.

Astilbe has foliage with finely split leaves that resemble Japanese Painted Fern and have a feathery look. Astilbe loves soil that is wet, well-drained and has some to all of the shade.

Benefits of substituting Japanese Painted Fern for Astilbe:

The stunning leaves of the Japanese Painted Fern add appeal to any garden. It’s a unique plant with a silver-gray tint and a delicate feel.

Minimal maintenance: Once grown, the resilient Japanese Painted Fern needs little upkeep. Moreover, it is disease- and pest-resistant.

Shade-tolerant: Japanese Painted Fern is a fantastic choice for dark regions of the garden since it thrives in partial to full shade.

While it likes wet soil, the Japanese Painted Fern may also survive in dry circumstances.

Using Japanese Painted Fern instead of Astilbe has the following drawbacks:

Lack of showy blossoms: Japanese Painted Fern lacks showy flowers, in contrast to Astilbe. Its only attractive feature is the leaf.

Astilbe grows more rapidly, although Japanese Painted Fern might take many years to reach its maximum size.

Restricted color range: The leaf of the Japanese Painted Fern is mostly silver-gray with hints of blue or red, which may not go well with every garden’s color plan.

In general, gardeners searching for a low-maintenance, shade-tolerant plant with distinctive leaves might consider Japanese Painted Fern as a perfect substitute for Astilbe.

The stunning foliage more than makes up for the lack of spectacular blossoms like the astilbe.



According to theSpruce.com, the perennial plant known as foamflower, or Tiarella cordifolia, is indigenous to North America. It often forms clumps and reaches heights of up to 12 inches and a width of 24 inches.

The foliage has serrated, heart-shaped leaves that are often variegated with silvery and green tones.

Foamflower produces exquisite spikes of pink or white blooms in the spring that soar above the leaves. Foamflower loves wet, well-drained soil and medium to full shade.

Foamflower is a perennial plant valued for its decorative appeal, much like Astilbe. Astilbe has a distinct growth pattern and leaves than foamflower, however. Foamflower features delicate spikes of flowers and variegated heart-shaped leaves, in contrast to Astilbe’s fluffy foliage and spectacular flower plumes.

Benefits of switching to foamflower instead of astilbe:

Distinctive foliage: The heart-shaped, variegated leaves of the foamflower provide appeal to any garden. Compared to Astilbe, they provide a distinct texture and color range.

Low-maintenance: Once established, foamflower is a resilient plant that needs minimal upkeep. Moreover, it is disease- and pest-resistant.

Foamflower is a fantastic choice for dark regions of the garden since it is shade-tolerant and thrives in partial to full shade.

While it favors wet soil, the Foamflower is capable of withstanding dry circumstances.

Disadvantages of switching to foamflower instead of astilbe:

Foamflower only produces white or pink blooms, which may not go well with every garden’s color scheme.

Foamflower blossoms bloom for a shorter period of time than Astilbe flowers do in the spring, lasting just a few weeks.

Foamflower often grows to a lesser size than Astilbe, which may not be as effective in bigger garden spaces.



Perennial plants of the genus Ligularia are indigenous to Asia, North America, and Europe.

They generally have huge, robust leaves that may be spherical or heart-shaped and can reach heights of 3-6 feet and a width of 2-3 feet.

While most species have dark green leaves, some show leaf variation.

The long spikes of yellow or orange flowers that Ligularia produces in the summertime soar above the leaves.

Ligularia loves soil that is wet, well-drained and has some to all of the shadow.

Ligularia is a perennial plant valued for its decorative qualities, much like Astilbe.

In contrast to Astilbe, Ligularia has a distinct growth pattern and leaves.

Ligularia features huge, robust leaves and towering spikes of flowers, in contrast to Astilbe’s delicate foliage and brilliant plumes of flowers.

Ligularia has some advantages over astilbe.

Unusual foliage: Compared to Astilbe, Ligularia’s big, robust leaves provide a contrasting texture and color palette.

Certain types of plants also have variegated leaves, which makes the plant even more interesting.

Vibrant blooms: The towering spikes of Ligularia’s brilliant yellow or orange flowers stand out against the plant’s dark green leaves.

Ligularia is a fantastic choice for shady regions of the garden since it is shade-tolerant and, like Astilbe, thrives in partial to full shade.

Ligularia like wet soil, which is advantageous in regions with abundant rainfall or where irrigation is accessible.

Cons of substituting Ligularia for Astilbe:

Ligularia may grow to be rather huge, which might not be ideal for locations with tiny gardens or limited space.

Shorter bloom period: In contrast to Astilbe’s prolonged flowering season, Ligularia’s blooms only bloom for a few weeks in the summer.

Ligularia’s huge leaves have the potential to burn in hot, bright environments, thus it may not be the ideal option for places with strong sunshine.

Another alternative to astilbe

Astilbe and Ligularia might be replaced with several different plants, such as:

Bleeding heart – A perennial plant with heart-shaped blooms in pink, crimson, or white.

Heuchera – are perennial plants with colorful leaves in green, purple, or golden tones. Read my article on heuchera care for more information.

Hosta – A perennial with voluminous, contrasting leaves in hues of variegated green, blue, and green. Read my article on companion plants for hosta for more information.

if you have a few minutes to spare. There isn’t a frickin’ problem. There is no doubt that the same as the rest of the world.

There is no time for the rest of the world. These could work well in certain garden environments, but they might not have the same decorative value as Astilbe and Ligularia.

However, some of these options may be more or less appropriate than others depending on the particular growth circumstances, soil composition, and climate of a garden.

While selecting plants for their gardens, gardeners should take all of these criteria into account.


The aim of this post was to enlighten gardeners searching for Plants that Look Like Astilbe and new choices for their gardens about Astilbe substitute plants.

Japanese Painted Fern, Foamflower, and Ligularia were the three plants that were thoroughly covered.

As an alternative to Astilbe, each plant was discussed in terms of appearance, growth requirements, and advantages and disadvantages.

Other plants that may be used as substitutes were also briefly mentioned but not covered in depth.

Gardeners have more alternatives when using substitutes for Astilbe to spruce up and beautify their landscapes.

Although astilbe is a well-liked and well-known plant among gardeners, it’s always a good idea to consider other possibilities that could better suit your unique growing circumstances and aesthetic preferences.

Japanese Painted Fern, Foamflower, and Ligularia are all excellent possibilities to take into account since they each have distinctive leaves or blossoms, can tolerate shade, and need little upkeep.

To make the best decisions for their gardens, gardeners should carefully analyze their growing environment and the unique requirements of the plants they are contemplating.

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