Abelia floribunda Decne.

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An evergreen shrub 6 to 10 ft high in a wild state, but frequently more on walls in this country; young shoots reddish, downy. Leaves ovate to roundish ovate, 34 to 134 in. long, 12 to 1 in. broad, shallowly toothed, pointed, firm in texture; glossy green and glabrous on both surfaces, but paler beneath; hairy only on the margin; stalk 18 in. or less long. Flowers pendulous, rosy-red to magenta, produced in June at or near the end of short twigs which spring from the year-old wood. Corolla slenderly funnel-shaped, narrowing towards the base, 112 to 2 in. long, nearly 1 in. wide at the mouth, where are five rounded, spreading lobes. Sepals five, green, linear-oval, 13 in. long. Stamens hairy. Bot. Mag., t. 4316.

Native of Mexico on the Cordilleras of Oaxaca at 10,000 ft, also found in the neighbouring states of Veracruz and Puebla; introduced to Europe in 1841. This is the handsomest of the abelias that can be grown out-of-doors with us, but it needs the protection of a wall. At Kew, a plant growing against the wall of a greenhouse has flourished for many years and flowers well most seasons, but it is quite unable to live in the open unprotected. For a south wall this shrub, with its shining leaves and gay flowers, is most attractive. In the milder countries it will reach a height of 20 ft, but good specimens have become rare since the hard winters of 1961-3, when A. floribunda was killed or badly damaged nearly everywhere.

From the Supplement (Vol. V)

Plants sometimes offered in garden centres under this name may be A. × grandiflora.

Abelia floribunda



Other species in the genus