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A deciduous shrub up to 12 ft high; young shoots, leaf-stalks, flower-stalks, and calyx all downy and furnished with stalked glands. Leaves up to 6 or 7 in. long, made up of eleven to twenty-three leaflets which are oval or inclined to ovate, 3⁄4 to 11⁄2 in. long, downy on both sides but more especially underneath, which is greyish. Flowers whitish to rosy purple, nearly 1 in. long including the stalk, densely borne in June and July twenty to thirty together on racemes up to 41⁄2 in. long including an inch or more of bare stalk at the base. Calyx downy, 3⁄8 in. long, bell-shaped with triangular to awl-shaped lobes. Pods oblong, 2 to 31⁄2 in. long, furnished with down and glandular bristles.
Native of the S.E. United States from N. Carolina to Alabama. This is one of the charming dwarf section of the robinias, its distinctive mark being the mixture of down and stalked glands on the young shoots and leaf-stalks. It was first named in 1913 but had been known in cultivation since 1904 at least. A bush originally obtained from the Arnold Arboretum flowered beautifully at Kew in July 1931. The species is worthy of wide cultivation.