Most Abelia species have a densely bushy habit, often with slightly arching branches and small glossy leaves that taper to a fine point. The young foliage has bronze to golden tints that in some cultivars persist to maturity. From late summer, small, full-shaped to tubular, white to pink flowers smother the bushes. Some species have persistent reddish sepals that provide an additional ornamental feature after the flowers have faded.
Although hardiness varies considerably, most abelias are not suitable in areas with severe winters. Plant in a position in sun or part-shade with moist, humus-rich, well-drained soil. Pruning should be undertaken to keep the plant looking tidy whilst maintaining its natural arching habit. Trim to shape in late winter or spring, removing the cane ends and also some of the basal shoots in order to allow room for new growth. Propagate from half-hardened or softwood cuttings.