Saponaria officinalis


Family: Caryophyllaceae

Other Common Names: hedge pink, soapwort, sweet betty, Fuller's herb
Weed class: monitor list
Native to: parts of Asia and Europe
Is this Weed Toxic?:

Not known to be.

Why Is It a Noxious Weed?

This plant is on the monitor list - it is not a listed noxious weed in Washington. Please contact its sponsor State Weed Board to report locations or for more information.

How would I identify it?

General Description

Bouncing-bet is an upright perennial that grows to around 3 feet (1 meter) tall. Plants have vigorous rhizomes that can develop colonies. Flowers are generally pink to white in color.

Flower Description

Flowers are in a congested cluster at stem tips, having 5 petals that are pink or white. Petals are spreading to reflexed, with 2 appendages at the junction of the petal base and claw. Flowers have 2 styles and 10 stamens. Flowers may be doubled and are often fragrant.

Leaf description

Leaves are opposite, lance-shaped and have smooth margins.

Stem description

Stems are oppositely branched and can be 4-angled. Stems are swollen at leaf nodes.

Fruit Seed Description

Fruits are oblong capsules with 4 valves that open at the apex. Capsules contain many small, kidney-shaped, flattened seeds that are covered with shiny tubercles.

Where does it grow?

Grows in open areas though does tolerate some shade. Habitats include riparian areas, grasslands, oak woodlands and disturbed areas such as roadsides.

How Does it Reproduce?

It reproduces by seed and spreads by rhizomes.

For More Information

Colorado Department of Agriculture's fact sheet on bouncing bet.

Description and images from

Additional Photos