This genus affords numerous ornamental shrubs and herbaceous plants, some of them very desirable. Among the herbaceous are the following, which are all very hardy, and easily propagated by dividing the roots.
Spircea Jilipendula. - Dropwort. - A very elegant species, with tuberous roots like the Peony. Flowers white; the buds shaded with pink; in corymbs; two feet high; from June to August. The foliage is beautiful.
S. Jilipendula plena. - Double Dropwort. - A very desirable plant, with clusters of fine double white flowers, from June to October. It is more dwarfish than the last; not more than one foot high. The time to divide the tubers of these two varieties is in August; they will then flower strong, the next year.
S. udmaria pleno. - Double Meadow Sweet. - This is a handsome border plant, producing proliferous corymbs of double white flowers, on erect stems two feet high, in June and July. A variety of this has variegated leaves.
S. lobata. - Lobe-leaved Spiraea. - A beautiful species, with deep pink or red flowers, in proliferous corymbs, in June and July; stems two feet high.
S. palmata. - This is a magnificent species from the west, growing to the height of five or six feet, with immense clusters of red flowers, in July; leaves palmate; flowers in large proliferous corymbs.
S. aruncus. - Goat's-beard. - Three or four feet high, with white panicled spikes, in June and July; leaves supra-decompound.
S. Japonica. - Japan Spiraea. - A species more delicate than the last; the flowers arranged in the same way; of a purer white; two feet high, in July and August.
These are some of the principal herbaceous Spirceas. All succeed best in a strong, moist soil, and endure the hardest winter without protection. For many beautiful shrubby species, see Shrubs.