Description from Flora of China
Shrubs or small trees. Branchlets russet, glabrous; juvenile branchlets downy. Stipules semiovate to subreniform; petiole pilose; leaf blade highly variable, usually elliptic, elliptic-lanceolate, elliptic-rhomboid, or obovate-elliptic, rarely lanceolate, ovate, or broadly ovate, 3.5-6 × 1.5-2.5 cm, abaxially whitish, often wrinkled, usually tomentose, adaxially dull green, pilose when young, glabrescent, base cuneate, rounded-cuneate, or subrounded, margin entire or dentate, apex shortly acuminate, acute, or obtuse. Flowering precocious. Male catkin broadly ellipsoid to subglobose, 2-2.5 × 1.8-2 cm, sessile; bracts dull brown or nearly black, elliptic-ovate or slightly obovate-lanceolate, ca. 3 mm, villous. Male flower: gland subsquare; stamens 2, distinct; filaments ca. 6 mm, slender, sparsely downy at base; anthers yellow, oblong. Female catkin shortly cylindric, 2.5-3.5 cm × 7-9 mm, sessile, with 2 tomentose scalelike leaflets at base; bracts dull brown or black, elliptic-lanceolate, ca. 2.5 mm, long pubescent. Female flower: gland 1; ovary narrowly conical, ca. 3.5 mm, pilose; stipe ca. 1.2 mm; style short; stigma 2-cleft. Capsule linear-conical, ca. 6 mm; stipe ca. as long as bracts. Fl. Apr, fr. May.
* Mountain slopes, woods. Gansu, Hebei, Nei Mongol, Ningxia, Qinghai, Shaanxi, Shanxi.