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Cistus × corbariensis Pourr.

Modern name

Cistus × corbariensis Pourr.

A densely bushy, evergreen shrub 2 or 3 ft high, often more in width; young branches glabrous, or with a very minute down. Leaves ovate, pointed, heart-shaped or rounded at the base, 34 to 2 in. long, 13 to 1 in. wide; minutely toothed and wavy at the margin, each tooth crested with a tuft of minute hairs; net-veined, dull dark green above, paler beneath, both surfaces with starry down; stalks 14 to 12 in. long, downy. Flowers 112 in. across, white with a yellow stain at the base of the petals, produced in June at the end of short axillary shoots; there are from one to three flowers on each stalk, which is slender, stellately hairy, and about 3 in. long. Outer sepals heart-shaped, 13 in. long, hairy.

A natural hybrid between the Narbonne variety of C. populifolius and C. salviifolius, taking its name from Corbières, in the south of France. This is one of the hardiest and best of cistuses, and like many hybrids possesses a vigour and constitution superior to that of its parents. In the debacle of rather tender plants which followed the great frosts of February 1895, this cistus was one of those which survived at Kew, the other being laurifolius. It also survived the hard winters of 1961-3 in many gardens. There may be several forms of the cross in cultivation, differing somewhat in shape of leaf and perhaps in hardiness. Large groups of plants provide most pleasing displays from June onwards every year. The general aspect of the plant is that of a small-leaved C. populifolius of which it has been known as “var. minor”.



Other species in the genus