Filipendula ulmaria
Midwest Noxious Weed: Do Not Plant
Common Name: meadowsweet 
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Rosaceae
Native Range: Western Asia, Europe
Zone: 3 to 9
Height: 3.00 to 6.00 feet
Spread: 1.00 to 3.00 feet
Bloom Time: June to August
Bloom Description: White/yellowish-white
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium to wet
Maintenance: Low
Suggested Use: Naturalize, Rain Garden
Flower: Showy, Fragrant, Good Cut
Tolerate: Rabbit, Deer
This plant is listed as a noxious weed in one or more Midwestern states outside Missouri and should not be moved or grown under conditions that would involve danger of dissemination.


Easily grown in average, medium to wet, well-drained soil in full sun to part shade. Prefers constantly moist, alkaline soils. Intolerant of drought. Appreciates part shade in hot climates. Propagate by seed or by dividing clumps in early spring. Freely self-seeds. With sufficient moisture, foliage may remain attractive throughout the growing season. If foliage depreciates in summer, cut back hard to promote new growth.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Filipendula ulmaria, commonly called meadowsweet or queen-of-the-meadow, is a large, clump-forming, upright perennial that typically grows 3-4' (less frequently to 6') tall and features branched, terminal, astilbe-like panicles (4-6") of fragrant, creamy white flowers in early to mid summer. Compound, pinnate, dark green leaves (7-9 leaflets each) are hairy and whitish beneath. Although native to Europe and Asia, this species has escaped gardens and naturalized in parts of eastern North America.

Genus name comes from the Latin words filum meaning a thread and pendulus meaning hanging for the root tubers in some species that hang together with threads.

Specific epithet means resembling Ulmus the genus name of elms.


No serious insect or disease problems. Some susceptibility to mildew.


Borders (rear), naturalized areas, wet meadows or moist areas along streams or ponds.