spi·​rea | \ spī-ˈrē-ə How to pronounce spirea (audio) \
variants: or spiraea

Definition of spirea

1 : any of a genus (Spiraea) of deciduous shrubs of the rose family with small usually white or pink flowers in dense racemes, corymbs, cymes, or panicles
2 : any of several garden plants resembling spireas especially : a shrub (Astilbe japonica) of the saxifrage family

Examples of spirea in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Steve Stash of Dove Creek Nursery restored the garden to its original style as dictated by landscaper John Grant, who created experiences through a series of terraces with plantings of sedum, geranium, hosta, foxglove, heather and spirea. Janet Eastman, OregonLive.com, "See four private estates during the Dunthorpe Garden Tour (photos)," 9 May 2018 Wright and others adopted pieces, from erecting pavilion-like structures to planting goldflame Japanese spirea. Janet Eastman, OregonLive.com, "Japanese gardens can calm you, kids, prisoners: Lessons on Zen-style 'Visionary Landscapes'," 8 Feb. 2018 That disease may attack any member of the rose family, including hawthorns, mountain ash and spirea as well as apples, pears and of course roses. Margaret Lauterbach, idahostatesman, "Thinking of becoming a gardener? Here’s a primer for southern Idaho," 31 Jan. 2018 Like Little Princess spirea, this popular plant was given a misleading name. Bonnie Blodgett, Twin Cities, "Blundering Gardener: If the rain didn’t get your plants, the aphids just might," 27 May 2017 Reaching 5-12 feet, the growth habit of ninebark is a loose mound similar to a large spirea and does well incorporated into a shrub border or natural planting. Ellen Nibali, baltimoresun.com, "Garden Q&A: Emerald ash borer," 4 May 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'spirea.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of spirea

1669, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for spirea

New Latin Spiraea, from Latin, a plant, from Greek speiraia

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about spirea

Statistics for spirea

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for spirea

The first known use of spirea was in 1669

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for spirea


variants: or spiraea \ spī-​ˈrē-​ə \

Kids Definition of spirea

: a shrub related to the rose that bears clusters of small white or pink flowers

More from Merriam-Webster on spirea

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with spirea

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about spirea

Comments on spirea

What made you want to look up spirea? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a flaw that causes the downfall of a hero

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

A Green Quiz

  • shamrock
  • What is the best definition of green-eyed monster?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!