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Piptanthus concolor Craib

Modern name

Piptanthus concolor Craib

A deciduous or partially evergreen bush up to 6 or 8 ft high; young shoots clothed with white hairs, becoming glabrous and ultimately chestnut-brown. Leaves trifoliolate, the three leaflets on a common stalk 1 in. long. Leaflets narrowly oval to oblanceolate, tapered about equally towards both ends, entire, mostly 214 to 4 in. long, 34 to 114 in. wide, rather glossy green above and but slightly paler green below, both sides very hairy when quite young, the upper one soon becoming glabrous, the lower one sparsely hairy. Racemes several inches long, with often three flowers at a joint, opening in May. Flowers pea-shaped, about 1 in. long, yellow, the standard petal stained with maroon. Calyx 12 in. long, glabrous inside, very hairy outside and on the margins; lobes slenderly pointed. Flower-stalk 34 in. long, very hairy; ovary silky. Pods covered with appressed down, 212 to 312 in. long, 38 in. wide.

Native of W. Szechwan, China; introduced in 1908 by Wilson. It was at first thought to be a form of P. laburnifolius, but in that species the leaves are glaucous beneath, in this they are green. P. concolor can be grown away from a wall at Kew, which is more than can be said of P. laburnifolius. But possibly a really hard winter would kill it.

subsp. yunnanensis Stapf P. bicolor Craib; P .forrestii Hort., not Craib – Shoots glabrous or only slightly hairy when young; leaves glaucous beneath (though this may not be a constant character). Introduced by Forrest from N.W. Yunnan. Bot. Mag., t. 9234.



Other species in the genus