General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Shrub
Life cycle: Perennial
Sun Requirements: Full Sun
Full Sun to Partial Shade
Water Preferences: Wet Mesic
Soil pH Preferences: Moderately acid (5.6 – 6.0)
Slightly acid (6.1 – 6.5)
Neutral (6.6 – 7.3)
Plant Height: 6-12 feet (2-4 m)
Leaves: Good fall color
Flowers: Showy
Blooms on new wood
Flower Color: Pink
Bloom Size: Under 1"
Flower Time: Summer
Underground structures: Rhizome
Suitable Locations: Bog gardening
Uses: Windbreak or Hedge
Will Naturalize
Wildlife Attractant: Bees
Resistances: Flood Resistant
Toxicity: Other: May be toxic in high quantities, although sensitivity varies with age, weight, and physical condition.
Propagation: Other methods: Cuttings: Stem
Stolons and runners
Pollinators: Various insects
Miscellaneous: Tolerates poor soil
Goes Dormant

Common names
  • Hardhack
  • Spiraea
  • Steeplebush
  • Rose Spiraea
  • Western Spiraea

Photo Gallery
Location: At Castle Lake in Shasta California 
Date: 2023-08-05
Location: At Castle Lake in Shasta California 
Date: 2023-08-05
Location: Twisp
Date: October
Location: Twisp
Location: Twisp
Date: November
Location: Cedarhome, Washington
Date: 2017-07-14

Photo courtesy of Joy Creek Nursery
  • Uploaded by Joy
Location: nature reserve, Gent, Belgium
Date: 2009-07-11
Location: Cedarhome, Washington
Date: 2010-11-06
Fall color
Location: Twisp
Date: 2014-08-12
In August
  • Posted by ILPARW (southeast Pennsylvania - Zone 6b) on Dec 20, 2019 9:53 AM concerning plant:
    The species name of this shrub was named after a Scottish botanist of David Douglas. I would call this plant the Western or Douglas Steeplebush, and it is extremely similar to the Eastern Steeplebush of Spiraea tomentosa of eastern North America. This western species is native from southeast Alaska into northern California to western Montana and much of Idaho with a spot in northwest Colorado in bogs and wetlands. It differs from the eastern species in growing larger and having slightly larger leaves to 4 inches long and slightly larger flower spikes to 8 inches long. I would recommend that the two species really be two different varieties of the same species, as they are so very much alike.
  • Posted by Bonehead (Planet Earth - Zone 8b) on Feb 15, 2013 4:22 PM concerning plant:
    This is native in the Pacific Northwest from Alaska to California, east to Idaho; more common west of the Cascade Range. Found growing along waterways or in swampy or marshy areas.

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