An evergreen shrub 4 ft and upwards high in the wild, with stout, stiff young shoots, leaf-buds four-angled. Leaves oval, mostly heart-shaped at the base, rounded at the apex, 21⁄2 to 5 in. long, rather more than half as much wide, dull green and without down at maturity above, covered beneath with a soft, thick, pale brown felt; stalk 1⁄2 to 3⁄4 in. long. Flowers produced in a terminal truss of seven to fifteen flowers. Calyx minute. Corolla bell-shaped, creamy white flushed with rose or bright rose usually dotted with crimson, 2 in. wide, six- or seven-lobed; stamens double the number of the corolla lobes, scarcely half the length of the corolla, downy at the base; ovary and style glabrous. Bot. Mag., t. 9392. (s. and ss. Taliense)
Native of S.W. Szechwan, N.W. Yunnan, and S.E. Tibet; discovered by Forrest in 1913 on the Chungtien plateau and introduced by him. He evidendy thought highly of this species, which he dedicated to his wife, but in cultivation it is unremarkable in its flowers and worth growing only for its handsome foliage, which is steely blue when young. It is perfectly hardy.