The Abelia ( Abelia x grandiflora ), a semi evergreen shrub cross between two Chinese species A. chinensis and A. uniflora, is the best known and most popular of the abelias. To 8 ft. or taller, spreading to 5 ft. or wider. Loses most of its leaves at 15°F/9°C. Freezes to the ground at 0°F/-18°C but usually recovers to bloom the same year, making a graceful border plant 10-15 in high.
Graceful arching branches densely clothed with ovel, usually glossy leaves 1/2-1 1/2 inches long; bronzy new growth. Tublar or bell shaped flowers in clusters at ends of branches or among leaves.
To keep the shrub's graceful form, prune selectively; don't shear. Abelias are adaptable plants, useful in shrub border, as space dividers and visual barriers, and near house walls; lower kinds are good bank or ground covers.
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