Filipendula - Queen of the Prairie, Meadow Sweet, Dropwort
This genus has 9 to 12 perennial herbaceous species in the family Rosaceae. They are native to the temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere. The foliage is often hairless, and the leaves are compound, usually pinnate and alternate in arrangement. They have large stipules that are adnate to the petiole. The flowers are collected together into terminal panicles. The flower colors range from white to red-pink.
The species are attractive when blooming and also when not blooming. They do best in moisture retentive soils, with dry soils causing plant distress and burnt crispy leaf margins. They will grow in full sun to part shade, too much shade cause diminished flowering and tall leggy plants.
The species include:
Filipendula hexapetale - see Filipendula vulgaris.
Filipendula kamtschatica - with white flowers and large terminal leaflets. Plants grow 2 meters tall and have fragrant flowers. Very decorative and useful for large gardens and parks. Native to Manchuria, Kamchatka and Japan.
Filipendula palmata - with pink flowers, the most common form of this species is 'Nana' which grows around 50 cm tall with palmately compound leaves. Best in a damp site in full sun to part shade. Zones 4-8. Native to Siberia.
Filipendula purpurea - with dark pink to carmine colored flowers, a large terminal leaflets and greatly reduced lateral leaflets. A large species growing over a meter tall. It has a spreading habit. A few different asexually propagated cultivars exist, including 'Elegans' with white flowers that have reddish anthers (giving the flowers a pinkish tint), it is more compact than the species and 'Alba' with pure white flowers. Zones 5-8. Native to Japan.
Filipendula ulmaria ‘Variegata' has white splashed leaves.