Description from Flora of China
Ephedra shennungiana Tang.
Shrubs to 1(-1.5) m tall; woody stems well developed, erect or partially procumbent, thick; herbaceous branchlets virgate, bluish green or grayish green, priunose, 1-1.5 mm in diam., rigid, internodes short, 1-3 cm × 1-1.5 mm, finely furrowed. Leaves opposite, brownish, 1.5-3 mm, connate for ca. 3/4 their length, free part bluntly triangular. Pollen cones solitary or in clusters of 3 or 4 at nodes, sessile or shortly pedunculate; bracts in 3 or 4 pairs, connate for ca. 1/3 their length; staminal column slightly exserted, with 6-8 sessile anthers. Seed cones usually opposite at nodes, shortly pedunculate, elongate-ovoid or ovoid at maturity, 8-10 × 4-5 mm; bracts in 3 pairs, apical pair connate for ca. 2/3 their length, red and fleshy at maturity; integument tube to 2 mm, straight or slightly curved, slightly exserted. Seeds usually 1, elongate-ovoid, 5-7 × 2.5-3 mm. Pollination Jun-Jul, seed maturity Aug-Sep. 2n = 14*.
This species has medicinal properties.
Dry and rocky places; 800-3000 m. Gansu, Hebei, Nei Mongol, Ningxia, Qinghai, Shanxi, Xinjiang [Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan]