Description from Flora of China
Shrubs large, 1-3(-5) m tall. Branches of previous year grayish yellow or grayish brown; vegetative branchlets yellowish green and tinged with gray-blue. Leaves of growing branches spreading toward outside, enlarged in lower part, lanceolate, linear-lanceolate, or linear, 4-9(-10) × (0.3-)1-3 mm, abaxially raised, base broadly cordate, semiamplexicaul, auriculate, apex acuminate or acute; those of vegetative branchlets cordate-lanceolate or lanceolate, semiamplexicaul, shortly decurrent, faintly auriculate, upward attenuate. Flower buds yellowish, to 5 mm, produced from leaf axils of growing branches in autumn. Racemes lateral in branches of previous year, appearing in spring before or when leaves occur, solitary, robust, 6-15(-25) cm, usually ca. 12 cm, 4-8(-15) mm in diam.; peduncles 1-2 cm; bracts linear-lanceolate or broadly linear, 3-6 mm, conspicuously exceeding calyx (including pedicels) or equaling calyx, 0.3-0.7 mm wide, greenish or membranous, apex acuminate, slightly curved toward outside at anthesis, reflexed after anthesis. Pedicels slightly shorter than or ca. as long as calyx. Flowers larger, 4-merous. Calyx deeply campanulate, base slightly united; sepals ovate, margin membranous, dentate, apex obtuse or acute. Petals open and reflexed when flowers in full bloom, pink, ovate-elliptic or oblong-obovate, inequilateral, 2-2.5 × 1-1.3 mm, apex obtuse, immediately deciduous after anthesis. Disk pseudo-terminal, thin, 4-lobed. Stamens 4, rarely 6 or 7, equaling or slightly exceeding petals; filaments dilated at base, gradually transitional to disk lobes; anthers pink, obtuse or with small protrusions at apex. Ovary ovoid-conic, 1.3-2 mm; styles nearly absent; stigmas 3. Capsule reddish or orange-yellow, ovoid-conic, 4-6 × ca. 2 mm. Fl. Apr-May, occasionally in autumn for second time. Flowers blooming in autumn 5-merous. 2n = 24*.
Salty soils of river valleys, river banks, sand dunes in desert regions. Gansu, Nei Mongol, Ningxia, Qinghai, Xinjiang [Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Russia, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan].