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A deciduous shrub up to 16 ft high, with graceful branching; young shoots purplish, hairy. Leaves simple, mostly obovate, approaching oval, with usually slender points, but tapering more gradually towards the base, the margin set with distant, bristle-like teeth, 2 to 6 in. long, 1 to 21⁄2 in. wide, dull green above, with short scattered hairs and a bristly midrib, paler beneath and more conspicuously hairy, especially on the midrib and on the twelve to twenty pairs of veins; stalk 1⁄4 to 1⁄2 in. long. Panicles terminal, pendulous, many-flowered, 4 to 8 in. long, scarcely as wide. Flowers white, 1⁄6 in. wide, fragrant; main and secondary flower-stalks downy.
Native of W. Hupeh, China; introduced by Wilson in 1907. A plant obtained from the Coombe Wood nursery flowered at Kew in July 1920. It is evidently near to M. cuneifolia, but that species is distinguished by the broader, more erect panicles, also, when out of flower, by the conspicuous tufts of down in the vein-axils beneath the leaves which are absent in M. pendens. It is quite hardy but does not grow so freely as M. cuneifolia.
See M. dilleniifolia susp. flexuosa above.