How to Grow Filipendula Plants in your Garden

Gardener's HQ Guide to Growing Meadowsweet, Queen of the prairie, Queen of the meadows, and Dropwort

Filipendula plants are hardy perennials that range in height from 60 cm to 3 m (2 to 10 feet).

They carry pink or purple plumes in the summer and have leaves that are similar to those of ferns.

They can be grown in borders that are a little bit moist.

Some common names for Filipendula include Queen of the meadows, Queen of the Prairie, Pink Froth, Spiraea, Meadowsweet and Dropwort.

Filipendula vulgaris
Filipendula vulgaris by AnnaKika.

Filipendula Growing and Care Guide

Common Names: Meadowsweet, Dropwort, Queen of the prairie, Queen of the meadows, Bridewort.
Life Cycle: Hardy perennial.
Height: 24 to 120 inches (60 to 300 cm).
Native: Northern America, Europe, Asia.
Family: Rosaceae.

Growing Region: Zones 3 to 9.
Flowers: Summer.
Flower Details: White, cream, pink. Plumes. Fragrant.
Foliage: Herbaceous. Lobed. Fern-like. Dark green upper leaf, downy, lighter lower leaf.

Sow Outside: Cover seed. Autumn using fresh seed. Seeds should first be sown into flats. Next sink the flat into the ground in an area that offers shade, preferably close to a wall that faces north. Provide a glass/plastic covering. Keep an eye on the flats to ensure that the soil remains moist and to check if seedlings have emerged. Transfer to pots when seedlings are strong. Transplant to final location in autumn.
Sow Inside: Germination time: one to three months. Temperature: 55 to 60°F (13 to 16°C). Ten weeks in advance. Transplant outdoors following the last frost.

Requirements and care: Full sunlight or partial shade; some species will only grow in the shade. Alkaline soil, moist soil. Mix in manure or compost. Soil must be kept moist so supply a spring and autumn mulch of organic material. Provide support with twigs. Cut back to the ground in autumn. Propagate: by dividing at the start of spring in cold areas or autumn in warmer areas.
Miscellaneous: Takes two years for seed grown plants to bloom. Filipendula are attractive to many species of moths and butterflies such as the Grizzled Skipper.

How to Grow Filipendula Plants such as Meadowsweet, Queen of the Meadows, and Dropwort in the Garden

Seeds of Filipendula species such as Queen of the meadows should be sown in flats in the autumn.

Lightly cover the seeds, cover with glass, and sink in the ground against a north facing shed or wall. Once the seeds have germinated, transfer them into pots.

The Filipendula plants should then be moved to their final location in the autumn.

Filipendula like to grow in a partially shadety area (though some can tolerate sunny conditions in moist soils). They have a preference for an organic alkaline soil.

It can take about two years until Filipendula will flower.

Caring for Filipendula Plants

Once established, more Filipendula plants can be had by dividing in the spring in cold areas, and in the Autumn in warmer areas.

Plants are fairly easy to look after. Requires mulching in the spring and autumn, and cutting back to the ground after flowering in the autumn.

Common Questions

How many members does the Filipendula genus have?

The Filipendula genus has a 12 known species.

Do members of Filipendula make a good garden or landscaping plant?

Absolutely! Filipendula species are known for their feathery flowers, which make great additions to any garden.

Which Filipendula species are most frequently grown by gardeners?

Filipendula ulmaria (Meadowsweet) and Filipendula rubra (Queen of the Prairie) are popular in many gardens.

Are members of the Filipendula plant genus fragrant?

Yes, many Filipendula species have a pleasing fragrance, like the sweet-smelling Meadowsweet.

What is the perfect location to grow Filipendula?

Filipendula thrives in locations with full sun to part shade and moist, well-drained soil.

Is Filipendula invasive in the USA, if so in which states?

Currently, Filipendula is not recognized as an invasive species in the USA.

How do I remove Filipendula plants from my garden?

Filipendula can be removed by digging out the plant, making sure to get as much of the root system as possible.


The Filipendula genus, known as Meadowsweet, contains flowering plants native to the temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere. These tall, herbaceous perennials produce clusters of small, fragrant flowers in summer, typically in shades of white or pink.

Filipendula plants prefer full sun to partial shade and moist, well-drained soil. They can be grown from seeds or division. Ideal for wildflower gardens, wetlands, or the back of borders, they are also attractive to pollinators and can naturalize in favorable conditions.

I hope that you found this guide on how to grow Filipendula plants in your garden. You may also enjoy my gardening guides on how to grow Aronia melanocarp, Sanguisorba plant, and Acaena plants.