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A deciduous shrub 1 to 3 ft high, of low, spreading habit, with glabrous round twigs. Leaves obovate to narrowly oval, tapering to both ends, from 3⁄4 to 2 in. long, 1⁄4 to 3⁄4 in. wide, with shallow, rounded teeth, dark glossy green, and quite glabrous; stalk 1⁄8 to 1⁄4 in. long. Flowers white, 3⁄4 in. across, produced in usually stalkless umbels of about four from buds on the previous year’s shoots, each flower on a slender stalk 1⁄2 to 1 in. long. Fruits about the size of a large pea, very deep reddish purple.
Native of continental Europe and parts of Siberia; cultivated in England for more than three centuries. It is a shrub of neat and pleasing habit, forming naturally a low, mound-like mass of slender branches, and wearing a very healthy aspect because of the deep shining green of its foliage. In gardens it is rarely seen except grafted standard high on a cherry stock. In this way its branches form a mop-headed mass with the lower branches pendent of their own weight. The fruits have a cherry flavour, but are too harsh and acid to be palatable. It blossoms in early May.
Cerasus intermedia Host
P. reflexa Hort., not Walp