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This species is evidently nearly related to M. ciliicalyx described above, and is connected with it by intermediate forms. It was originally described and named by Maximowicz in 1870, and he distinguished it from M. ciliicalyx by its shortly racemose instead of umbellate inflorescences, and its obovate rather than oval leaves. His own specimens, however, show little or no difference in shape of leaf. In these specimens the most obvious distinction of M. multiflora is in the lobes of the calyx being linear and up to 3⁄8 in. long. Some authors have relied on the glabrous flower-stalks of M. multiflora as distinct from the glandular-bristly ones of M. ciliicalyx, but in specimens of the former collected by Wilson in Japan in 1914, whose flowers have very distinctly linear-lobed calyces, the flower-stalks are as glandular-bristly as in M. ciliicalyx. The corolla of M. multiflora is somewhat shorter and more urn-shaped than that of M. ciliicalyx; its colour varies from pale purple to nearly white with deeper coloured lobes.
Native of Japan. It was collected in flower in that country by Veitch’s collector, Charles Maries, during August 1880, on Fuji-yama, but if he sent home seeds at that time the plant never became established in gardens.