Shrub or perennial herb, mostly 60-100 cm high, often woody at the base.

Leaves ovate to oblong or lanceolate, 6-10 cm long, 2-4 cm wide; petiole 10-30 mm long.

Photo: Robert Whyte

Foliage and fruit

Many small flowers appear on slender spikes emerging from the leaf axils in the uppermost leaves (axillary racemes). Flowers mostly in spring and summer. Fruit are small red berries each with a single seed.

Photo: Robert Whyte