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Good-looking goat’s beard

By: Garden Gate staff
Goat’s beard has beautiful blooms that add texture and height. Find out how to grow plants that look their best.

Good-looking goat’s beard

Not many plants brighten the garden as well as goat’s beard (Aruncus dioicus), with its 1-ft.-long fluffy white flowers. It looks a bit like an astilbe (Astilbe hybrids) on steroids, and blooms are a great source of nectar for bees and butterflies. You may even notice the larvae of the dusky azure butterfly nibbling away at the foliage.

This North American native needs consistent moisture to look good. When plants dry out frequently, leaf edges turn crispy and eventually die. If the foliage gets too ratty, cut all the stems to the ground and new growth will appear in a few weeks.

In cool summer areas, you can grow goat’s beard in full sun. The farther south it’s grown, the more afternoon shade will be a benefit. (Though deep shade causes plants to develop a leggy look and flower less.)

Type Perennial

Blooms White in midspring to early summer

Light Part shade

Soil Humus-rich, moist, well-drained

Pests None serious

Size 3 to 6 ft. tall, 2 to 4 ft. wide

Cold-hardy USDA zones 4 to 9

Heat-tolerant AHS zones 9 to 1

Source Lazy S’S Farm Nursery

Published: July 5, 2016
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