A species with a wide range from Europe and W. Asia to Mongolia, and exceedingly variable. It is mostly represented in gardens by the following variety:
var. laxiflorus (Lindl.) Schneid. C. laxiflorus Lindl. – A deciduous shrub, 4 to 8 ft high, of bushy habit; young wood downy. Leaves broadly oval or ovate, blunt or rounded at the apex, up to 11⁄2 or 2 in. long, dark green and often hairy above when young, always greyish woolly beneath. Flowers pinkish white, borne in gracefully pendulous cymose panicles 1 to 2 in. long, some of the larger panicles carrying twenty to forty flowers; calyx glabrous. Fruit 1⁄4 in. across, globose, black.
Native of Siberia; introduced to England from Vienna in 1826. Among the black-fruited cotoneasters this is distinguished by its comparatively large panicles of blossom, which give it quite a Pretty aspect in May, and render it the most attractive of this group.