This species is endemic to west Hubei, Sichuan and Yunnan provinces in China. It was first discovered in 1875 by a surgeon in the Russian army and introduced to western cultivation in 1908. It blooms heavily in winter through early spring and is attractive to butterflies. The blooms are fragrant lilac-mauve flowers with orange throats in twelve inch panicles. The leaves are gray-green with gray wool underneath. It grows to a maximum height of eight feet with full sun.
January - February, November - December