Shrubs, deciduous, to 3 m tall. Bark brownish gray. Branchlets of current year grayish stellate-pubescent; branchlets of previous year grayish, terete, glabrous, with dispersed, small, rounded lenticels. Winter buds naked, grayish stellate-pubescent. Leaves always opposite, not clustered at apices of branchlets; stipules absent; petiole green, robust, 4-12 mm, grayish stellate-pubescent; leaf blade greenish white when young, ovate to elliptic-ovate, 4-10 × 2-6 cm, papery, abaxially stellate-pubescent particularly along veins, adaxially sparsely simple hairy and stellate-pubescent, glabrescent, midvein raised abaxially, lateral veins 4- or 5-jugate, pinnate, slightly arched, branched, anastomosing near margin, or rarely ending in teeth, raised abaxially, impressed adaxially, veinlets transverse, conspicuous abaxially, inconspicuous adaxially, not lobed, base rounded to slightly cordate, without glands, margin denticulate, apex acute. Flowers appearing after leaves; inflorescence a compound umbel-like cyme, terminal, ca. 6 cm in diam.; rays whorled; first node of inflorescence usually with 4-7 rays, dense, grayish white stellate-pubescent, without large sterile radiant flowers; peduncle 1-4 cm; bracts caducous, leaflike, green, ovate to elliptic, stellate-pubescent; bracteoles scalelike. Flowers on rays of 2nd or 3rd order, fragrant, subsessile or shortly pedicellate. Calyx greenish or reddish; tube oblong-tubular, 0.7-1 mm, glabrous; lobes ovate, very small, 0.5-1 mm, glabrous, apex obtuse. Corolla pinkish, hypocrateriform, ca. 1 cm in diam., glabrous; tube 8-10 mm; lobes spreading, broadly ovate, 5-6 × 3-5 mm, apex rounded, margin entire. Stamens inserted at or below middle of corolla tube, ca. 5 mm; filaments 2-4 mm; anthers yellow, oblong, ca. 2 mm. Styles nearly as long as calyx lobes; stigmas capitate. Fruit initially turning red, maturing black, elliptic, 1.1-1.4 cm, base rounded, apex rounded, glabrous; pyrenes compressed, ellipsoid, 6-8 × ca. 4 mm, with 2 dorsal grooves and 3 ventral grooves, apex rounded. Fl. Mar-May, fr. Jun-Sep. 2n = 18(16).