An evergreen shrub 12 to 18 ft high, related to P. atalantioides and P. rogersiana. It differs from both in its leaves, which are obovate-oblong, broadest in the upper third or upper quarter of the blade, rounded at the apex, long-tapered to the base, 1 to almost 3 in. long, 3⁄8 to 1 in. wide, usually coarsely toothed. In P. atalantioides the leaves are broadest at or near the middle. In P. rogersiana they are smaller, not more than 11⁄2 in. long except on vigorous shoots, and oblanceolate or oblong-oblanceolate. The inflorescence is downy, as in P. atalantioides (glabrous in P. rogersiana). Bot. Mag., t. 9099, figs 5-10.
P. crenato-serrata is a native of China from N.E. Yunnan and W. Hupeh northward to Kansu and Shensi. It was discovered by J. Watters of the British Consular Service near Ichang in Hupeh and described in 1880. The French missionary Ducloux introduced it to Maurice de Vilmorin’s garden at Les Barres, and from there it was distributed. But some at least of the plants grown in this country derive from seeds collected by Reginald Farrer in Kansu in 1914. It is useful in retaining its fruits until spring, if birds permit, but has never attracted as much attention as its two relatives P. atalantioides and P. rogersiana.
The name Pyracantha fortuneana (Maxim.) Li has been proposed for this species (Journ. Arn. Arb., Vol. 25, p. 420). It is based on Photinia fortuneana Maxim., a name given to the species represented by material collected by Fortune in 1845 (no. A 69). However, as pointed out in Bot. Mag., n.s., t. 74, the material of Fortune’s A 69 at Kew seems better placed in Photinia, and does not belong to Pyracantha crenato-serrata.
P. ‘Taliensis’. – This pyracanth was at one time in cultivation under the name “P. crenulata taliensis”. It appears to be intermediate between P. crenato-serrata and P. rogersiana but nearer to the former. The leaves are similar in shape but smaller and finely toothed almost to the base. The young shoots are slightly downy, the leaves quite glabrous. It is very handsome in fruit, the berries being shining yellow, orange-shaped, 1⁄4 in. wide, but falling much sooner than those of P. crenato-serrata and in colour by October. It was obtained by Kew from Messrs Chenault of Orleans in 1924, and from its name should have come from the Tali Range in Yunnan.
P. ‘Orange Glow’. – Fruits orange-red, oblate, about 3⁄8 in. wide when mature, but colouring around mid-September before they reach full size. Leaves mostly oblong-obovate, obtuse and mucronate at the apex, scarcely tapered at the base. A probable hybrid between P. crenato-serrata and P. coccinea, raised in Holland, very vigorous and free-fruiting, and making an excellent specimen in the open ground. Said to be scab-resistant.