Description from Flora of China
Anabasis abolinii Iljin; A. affinis Fischer & C. A. Meyer.
Subshrubs 5-20 cm tall. Root black-brown, stout. Woody stem extremely branched, gray-brown; branchlets gray-white, usually fissured annular; annual branches mostly terminal on branchlets, simple or upper ones few branched, yellow-green, usually with 4-8 internodes; internodes smooth or papillate, lower ones subterete, to 2.5 cm, upper ones shorter, ribbed. Leaves spreading and arcuate recurved, linear, semiterete, 3-8 mm, apex obtuse or acute, with a semitransverse, acicular awn; lower leaves appressed to branch, triangular, usually shorter. Flowers axillary, solitary; bractlets ovate, adaxially concave, margin membranous, apex slightly fleshy. Perianth segments ovate, ca. 2.5 mm, abaxially winged in fruit, apex subobtuse; wing erect or slightly spreading, yellow-apricot or purple-red, occasionally dark brown, membranous; wing of outer 3 perianth segments reniform or suborbicular; wing of inner 2 segments orbicular or obovate. Disk lobes orange-yellow, semiorbicular, slightly fleshy. Anthers 0.6-0.9 mm, apex acute. Ovary usually papillate; stigmas erect or slightly recurved, black-brown, adaxially papillate. Utricle ovoid to broadly so, ca. 2 mm; pericarp yellow-brown. Seed dark brown, suborbicular, ca. 1.5 mm in diam. Fl. Jul-Aug, fr. Sep-Oct.
Gobi desert, arid slopes, alluvial fans. W Gansu, W Nei Mongol, Ningxia, Xinjiang [Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Russia (SW Siberia)].