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Spiraea douglasii (Rose spirea)
Loughmiller, Campbell and Lynn

Spiraea douglasii

Spiraea douglasii Hook.

Rose Spirea, Western Spiraea, Hardhack Spiraea

Rosaceae (Rose Family)



USDA Native Status: L48 (N), AK (N), CAN (N)

A many-stemmed, fast-growing, 4-10 ft. shrub. Oblong leaves are shiny green on top and white-woolly beneath. Tiny, rose-colored, five-petaled flowers occur in dense, 4-6 in. long panicles at the tips of the stems. The panicles appear fuzzy because of the flowers’ prominent, protruding stamens.

Hardhack is a member of the family Rosaceae, which includes about 2000 species of trees, shrubs, and herbs worldwide, including serviceberries (Amelanchier), hawthorns (Crataegus), apples (Malus), plums and cherries (Prunus), and mountain-ashes (Sorbus).


From the Image Gallery

2 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Shrub
Leaf Retention: Deciduous
Fruit Type: Aggregate , Follicle
Size Notes: Up to about 10 feet tall.
Leaf: Dark Green
Fruit: Aggregated follicles.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Pink
Bloom Time: May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep


USA: AK , CA , CO , ID , MO , MT , OR , TN , WA
Native Distribution: B.C. to n.w. MT, s. to n. CA
Native Habitat: Low, damp places below 6000 ft.

Growing Conditions

Water Use: Low
Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist
CaCO3 Tolerance: Low
Soil Description: Moist soils.


Warning: Sometimes used medicinally, this plant can be poisonous in high quantities. Sensitivity to a toxin varies with a person’s age, weight, physical condition, and individual susceptibility. Children are most vulnerable because of their curiosity and small size. Toxicity can vary in a plant according to season, the plant’s different parts, and its stage of growth; and plants can absorb toxic substances, such as herbicides, pesticides, and pollutants from the water, air, and soil.
Conspicuous Flowers: yes

Value to Beneficial Insects

Special Value to Native Bees

This information was provided by the Pollinator Program at The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.


Description: Propagate by seed or softwood cuttings. Offshoots from the creeping underground stems can be readily established.
Commercially Avail: yes

Find Seed or Plants

Find seed sources for this species at the Native Seed Network.

National Wetland Indicator Status

This information is derived from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Wetland Plant List, Version 3.1 (Lichvar, R.W. 2013. The National Wetland Plant List: 2013 wetland ratings. Phytoneuron 2013-49: 1-241). Click here for map of regions.

From the National Organizations Directory

According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:

Santa Barbara Botanic Garden - Santa Barbara, CA
Native Seed Network - Corvallis, OR


Bibref 841 - Native Alternatives to Invasive Plants (2006) Burrell, C. C.

Search More Titles in Bibliography

Web Reference

Webref 30 - Calflora (2018) Calflora
Webref 38 - Flora of North America (2019) Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter

Additional resources

USDA: Find Spiraea douglasii in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Spiraea douglasii in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Spiraea douglasii


Record Modified: 2022-10-21
Research By: TWC Staff

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