Abelia, a very underrated heesterIs a hybrid between Abelia × grandiflora Abelia × parvifolia.
Evergreen or semi evergreen, broad burgeoning bush to 1.5 m high. Young shoots reddish and fuzzy hair. Leaves 2-5 cm long, narrow ovate to ovate, with top and focused mostly with entire edges. The top shiny dark green and sparsely hairy and covered with small glandular hairs. Young leaves as well as bronze fall color.
Flowers single to short steal, in small axillary clusters, self-contained at the end of twigs. Bracts two, sometimes three, these 10 mm long, oblong or elliptical, red, occasionally toothed or lobed two weak at the top. Flower tube to 2.5 cm long, violet-pink with orange in the throat, bell-shaped, tapering in the middle of a short curved tube. Blooms from summer to autumn.
The influence of Abelia x grandiflora is seen in the compact habit and glossy, and usually leaves permanent variable number of bracts, often with two lobes. The influence of Abelia parvifolia is reflected in the sometimes hairy and glandular hairs on some leaves, the rather broad bracts and larger, more funnel shaped, bell-shaped flower tube, and the highly colored flowers.
This hybrid was developed by Edward Goucher in cooperation with U.S. Department of Agriculture and introduced by Glenn Dale, Maryland, USA, 1911. This is a very rewarding kind that deserves more attention.