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Shrub, to 2m; young shoots scaly and variably setose. Leaves deciduous, obovate to obovate-elliptic, 2.5-4.5(6.5) x 1.4-2.1(-2.7)cm, apex rounded, margin ciliate, upper surface usually lacking setae at maturity, lower surface with a varying number of setae that are sometimes restricted to the base of the midrib and the margins, the scales of two kinds, the smaller tend to become greyish to purple or even black and are half the size of the larger. Flowers precocious, 2-4, in a terminal and sometimes also axillary inflorescence; calyx small; corolla yellow to greenish, 17-23mm; stamens 10; ovary scaly, style sometimes puberulent at base.
Distribution Nepal, China (S Tibet, W Yunnan), NE Burma.
RHS Hardiness H4a-b.