4. Tamarix gracilis Willdenow, Abh. Königl. Akad. Wiss. Berlin. 1812-1813: 81. 1816.
翠枝柽柳 cui zhi cheng liu
Shrubs, 1.5-3(-4) m tall. Branches gray-green, robust. Leaves of growing branches lanceolate, larger, more than 4 mm, amplexicaul; those of vegetative branches lanceolate to ovate-lanceolate or ovate-orbicular, unequal in size, 1-4 mm, base decurrent, amplexicaul, auriculate, imbricate, apex acuminate. Racemes in spring lateral in branches of previous year, 1-4(-5) cm × ca. 9 mm; those in summer 2-5(-7) cm, at apices of growing branches of current year forming a lax panicle. Flowers in spring 4-merous, those in summer 5-merous, 4- and 5-merous flowers mixed in same inflorescence in transitional period from spring to summer. Pedicels 0.5-1.5(-2) mm. Corolla 4(-5) mm in diam., those in spring slightly larger than those in summer; bracts of spring flowers spatulate, 1.5-2 mm, subequaling or slightly exceeding pedicels, abaxially slightly raised, base dilated, apex acuminate. Sepals triangular-ovate, ca. 1 mm, base slightly united, outer 2 larger, green, margin membranous, denticulate, apex obtuse, rarely acutish. Petals obovate-orbicular or elliptic, 2.5-3 mm, completely open and recurved when flowers in full bloom, pink or purplish, deciduous after anthesis. Disk purple-red, thick, 4- or 5-lobed. Stamens 4 or 5; filaments equaling or ca. 1/2 exceeding petals, broadly linear, gradually dilated toward base, inserted at apex of disk lobes, occasionally between disk lobes; anthers purple or pink, apex apiculate, obtuse, or retuse. Styles 3, 1/5-1/2 as long as ovary. Capsule large, 4-7 × ca. 2 mm. Fl. May-Aug.
Banks of river and lakes, sandy places, sand dunes in deserts and dry steppe regions. Gansu, Nei Mongol, Qinghai, Xinjiang [Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan; SW Asia (Turkey)].