A deciduous shrub, perhaps a small tree in the wild; young shoots purplish, downy when quite young; winter-buds elongated, covered with tawny down. Leaves simple, oval to obovate, abruptly slender-pointed, tapered to the base, toothed, 2 to 5 in. long, half as wide, dark green above and with scattered hairs there, pale beneath with axil-tufts of pale down and hairs on the midrib; veins in ten to fifteen pairs; leaf-stalk 1⁄4 to 3⁄8 in. long, downy. Flowers produced in loose, slender panicles about 6 in. long, very small, yellowish white. Fruits 3/16 in. wide, globose, black, covered at first with a purplish bloom.
Native of Japan; introduced in 1915. This shrub flowered at Wakehurst, Sussex, in August 1930, but it does not promise to be as ornamental as M. cuneifolia. It has the same type of small flower as that species but the panicles are not so large nor nearly so thickly packed with blossom. It suffered badly at Kew in the winter of 1928-9 and is apparently best fitted for the milder counties.