This section is from the book "The Standard Cyclopedia Of Horticulture Vol2", by L. H. Bailey. See also: Western Garden Book: More than 8,000 Plants - The Right Plants for Your Climate - Tips from Western Garden Experts.
(Greek, referring to the powerful spines). Rubiacese. A tender evergreen shrub, chiefly valued for its coral-red berries, which remain on the bush until the flowers of the next season are produced.
Divaricately branched, strongly spiny woody plants: leaves small, opposite, leathery, nearly sessile, broadly ovate, acuminate: flowers small, axillary, in l's or 2's, white, fragrant; calyx-tube obovoid, limb 4-5-cut; corolla funnel-shaped. Prop, by cuttings; sometimes grown in greenhouses and perhaps adaptable for planting in the southern parts.
Gaertn. Described above, being the only species as understood by some authors; but others keep D. major, Sieb. & Zucc. (which is sometimes nearly spineless), distinct, distinguishing it by the 2-3-times larger leaves and the larger flowers; others combine the two as species and variety, as D. indicus variety major, Makino. Gt. 17:570. The species occurs from E. India to Japan, the variety major being Japanese. The species is a low thick bush, densely dichotomously branched: leaves ovate-acute, shining green above, light green beneath, in variety major 1 1/2 in. long. The shining leaves and showv berries commend the plant to cultivated L, H. B.