A deciduous shrub of dense-branched, rounded habit 6 to 10 ft high; bark of the younger branches covered densely with conspicuous warts. Leaves ovate, ovate-lanceolate, or oval; 1 to 21⁄2 in. long, 1⁄2 to 1 in. wide; finely toothed, slender-pointed, rounded or wedge-shaped at the base; stalk 1⁄12 in. long. Cymes with very slender stalks about 1 in. long, usually three- sometimes seven-flowered. Flowers purplish brown, 1⁄4 in. across, four-parted. Fruit yellowish or red, 1⁄2 in. across; seed black, with an outer coat of orange.
Native of E. Europe and W. Asia; introduced from Austria in 1763. This species is readily recognised among all cultivated spindle-trees by the remarkably warted bark. It bears fruit very sparingly with us, and has little to recommend it as an ornamental shrub.