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A dwarf, sturdy bush allied to U. minor, and by some writers made a variety of it. In general appearance, however, it more resembles U. europaeus, having the same hairy branches and stout spiny branchlets, but it is much dwarfer, usually under 2 ft. The flowers, each 5⁄8 in. long and bright yellow, are borne from August to October; the wing-petals are curved and longer than the keel, the calyx finely downy. Pods 1⁄3 to 1⁄2 in. long, one- or two-seeded.
Native of W. Europe, and abundant in the southwest of England, where it makes (often in company with Erica cinerea and E. tetralix) most charming displays in autumn. The heaths of Dorset, covered with these plants, will be familiar to many. It is in some respects intermediate between U. europaeus and U. minor, resembling the former in its branches, but the latter in time of flowering and in the absence of hairs from the calyx. It is not so hardy as either of them, but apparently withstands all except the very hardest winters at Kew, especially when the plants are a few years old. In gardens it is scarcely known – being confused with U. minor – but is very pretty planted in poor soil, especially if associated with the two heaths just named.