ABELIA TRIFLORA

Abelia triflora
Native to east Asia and the north-western Himalayas, Abelia triflora is a large erect shrub with a graceful, ornamental habit. First described by botanists Robert Brown (1773–1858) and Nathaniel Wallich (1786–1854), it was introduced to western science in 1847.

Commonly known as the Indian abelia, it is a large deciduous shrub, which to some could even be considered as being a small, multi-stemmed tree. Under favourable conditions, it can grow to a respective height and spread of 3.5 m and 3 m. It has an upright, bushy habit, with dull-green, lanceolate leaves.

Abelia triflora will bloom in June, producing sweet-scented, white-tinged flowers in groups of three, and in large clusters. The flowers are hermaphrodite having both male and female organs.

In its native habitat, Abelia triflora is usually found growing amongst dry scrub and rocky slopes, and prefers calcareous (chalk or limestone) soils. Under garden conditions it will require light, sandy and medium loamy soils. It will not be suitable for acidic soils although it will tolerate neutral soils. As you would expect it is idea for alkaline soils and will also grow in very alkaline soils.

It will perform best in full sun but will tolerate semi-shade. It is hardy in (light woodland) or no shade. It has proven hardy in Great Britain.

Abelia triflora received the Award of Merit (AM) from the Royal Horticultural show in 1959.

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