Description from Flora of China
Draba rupestris R. Brown var. altaica C. A. Meyer in Ledebour, Fl. Altaic. 3: 71. 1831; D. altaica var. foliosa O. E. Schulz; D. altaica var. glabrescens Lipsky; D. altaica var. microcarpa O. E. Schulz; D. altaica prol. modesta (W. W. Smith) O. E. Schulz; D. altaica var. modesta (W. W. Smith) W. T. Wang; D. altaica var. racemosa O. E. Schulz; D. modesta W. W. Smith; D. rupestris var. pusilla Karelin & Kirilov.
Herbs perennial, (1-)2-8(-10) cm tall, cespitose. Caudex few branched, ultimate branches terminated in rosettes and covered with petiolar remains of previous years. Stems erect, simple from caudex, rarely branched above, sparsely to densely hirsute with simple, straight or crisped trichomes to 0.7 mm, these sometimes mixed with forked and stellate ones, rarely glabrescent. Basal leaves rosulate, persistent; petiole (2-)5-12 mm, becoming stramineous; leaf blade linear-lanceolate or lanceolate, rarely oblanceolate or subspatulate, (0.3-)0.6-2(-3) cm × 1-4(-7) mm, pubescent exclusively or predominantly with simple trichomes, stellate or forked trichomes mainly on midvein, base attenuate to cuneate, margin entire or 1-3(-6)-toothed on each side, often ciliate, apex acute. Cauline leaves (1 or)2-6(-8), sessile; leaf blade ovate, oblong, elliptic, or lanceolate, (3-)4-13(-20) × 1-4.5(-6) mm, pubescent as basal leaves, base cuneate or obtuse, margin entire or 1-5(-7)-toothed on each side, apex acute. Racemes 5-15(-24)-flowered, bracteate basally, rarely ebracteate, not or only slightly elongated and subumbellate in fruit. Fruiting pedicels 1-4 mm, ascending to divaricate, straight, glabrous or sparsely to densely pubescent. Sepals oblong, 1-1.5 × 0.4-0.6 mm, erect, abaxially sparsely pubescent with simple trichomes, base of lateral pair not saccate, margin not membranous. Petals white, spatulate, (1.2-)1.5-2.5 × (0.5-)0.7-1 mm, apex emarginate; claw to 0.7 mm. Filaments (0.6-)1-1.5 mm; anthers ovate, 0.1-0.2 mm. Ovules 10-20 per ovary. Fruit ovate to oblong, (3-)4-7(-8) × 1.5-2 mm, latiseptate, not twisted; valves glabrous, not veined, base obtuse, apex acute; style 0.1-0.2 mm. Seeds brown, ovate, 0.7-0.9 × 0.5-0.6 mm. Fl. Jun-Aug, fr. Jul-Sep.
A widespread and highly variable species divided by Schulz into seven infraspecific taxa that were based primarily on minor, continuous differences in plant height, number and size of cauline leaves, density of indumentum, and fruit size. However, a critical examination of the types of these taxa reveals that none of them merits recognition.
Rocky slopes, gravelly areas, moraine, streamsides, Kobresia mats, Juniperus forests, grassy slopes; 2000-5600 m. Gansu, Qinghai, Sichuan, Xinjiang, Xizang, Yunnan [Afghanistan, India, Kashmir, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Nepal, Pakistan, Russia, Sikkim, Tajikistan].