Native Steeplebush Adds Beauty and Attracts Butterflies
It’s not your common spirea found in many commercial and home landscapes; but rather it’s less utilized relative and North American native shrub known as steeplebush or hardhack (Spiraea tomentosa).
This adaptable shrub is hardy in zones 3 to 8. It prefers full sun, acidic sandy soils with wet to moist conditions, but it will tolerate light shade and a wide range of soils.
Steeplebush grows 2 to 4 feet tall and much wider as its suckering nature allows it to form colonies. This makes it a great choice for pond side plantings, hedges, natural areas, rain gardens and bank stabilization.
The spires of pink flowers appear from mid-summer into fall. Light deadheading will encourage more bloom. The attractive flowers help attract beneficial insects like bees and butterflies. It’s a nectar source for the rare Karner Blue butterfly and the leaves are a favorite food for several caterpillars and moths.
A bit more information: Another native spirea, Meadowseet (Spiraea alba), produces spires of white flowers and is hardy in zones 3 to 7. It makes a great cut flower and is a butterfly favorite.
Upcoming Webinars & Appearances
Feb. 4, 2023
WCBA's Home Building &
West Bend, WI
Feb. 10-12, 2023
Garden & Landscape EXPO
June 3 – 11, 2023
“Castles & Gardens” Adventure in Ireland with Melinda Myers
Includes the Bloom Festival in Dublin!
CLICK HERE for more information on Melinda's 2022 Wisconsin State Fair presentations on
Affordable Food Gardening
CLICK HERE for pollinator gardening webinars, videos & DIY projects
Watch Melinda's past webinars ON DEMAND