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A deciduous shrub whose young shoots are at first clothed with close stellate down, becoming glabrous and brown the second year. Leaves lanceolate to oval-lanceolate, mostly rounded at the base, the apex long and tapered, minutely toothed, up to 21⁄2 in. long by 1 in. wide on the sterile shoots, much smaller on the short flowering ones; the upper surface dull dark green, furnished with appressed, stellate, mostly four- or five-rayed hairs; grey-green beneath, with more minute and more numerous stellate hairs (only visible with a lens); veins in five to seven pairs; leaf-stalks 1⁄8 to 1⁄6 in. long. Flowers borne numerously during July at the end of leafy twigs about 3 in. long, in compact corymbose panicles 2 in. across. Flowers white, 1⁄3 in. wide, closely packed; petals roundish, imbricate in the bud; calyx bell-shaped at the base, the lobes broadly ovate; flower-stalks stellately hairy. Bot. Mag., t. 8795.
Native of China; introduced by Maurice de Vilmorin, and distributed by him under the number 4277. It flowered for the first time at Kew and Glasnevin in July 1913. It is distinct in its small, densely clustered blossoms.
In this species Zaikonnikova includes the east Himalayan D. hookeriana, mentioned on page 36 under D. corymbosa, and this judgement is accepted by Dr H. Hara in An Enumeration of the Flowering Plants of Nepal (Vol. 2, p. 157 (1979)). However, the problem of the status of D. hookeriana raised by this monograph was considered at the time when the present edition of the main work was being prepared, and the advice given by the Kew botanists who were kind enough to go into the matter was that it is specifically distinct from D. compacta.