Herbs, 8-80 cm, densely pubescent to nearly glabrous, producing stolons. Basal leaves 5-60 cm; petiole 2-40 cm; blade elliptic-oblong, 1-25 × 1-12 cm, base cordate to obtuse, apex rounded. Cauline leaves dimorphic; primary leaf 1(-2), usually bearing secondary leaves in axil; blade sessile, broadly to narrowly ovate, 1-9 × 1-4 cm, base clasping, apex rounded to acute. Secondary leaves 1-4, 2-20 cm; petiole 1-12 cm; blade elliptic-oblong, 2-10 × 1-5 cm, base cordate to rounded, apex rounded to acute. Spikes erect, fragrant, conic, 1-4 cm, subtended by bracts; bracts 4-9, white to reddish, petaloid, 5-35 × 5-15 mm. Floral bracts white, ± orbiculate, 3.5-6 mm (distinct portion), clawed, each adnate to an ovary. Capsules brown, 5-7 mm, coalescent but easily separable. Seeds brown, 1-1.5 × 0.8-1 mm, reticulate. 2n = 22.
Phenology: Flowering early spring–summer.
Habitat: Wet, alkaline, saline, and coastal marsh areas
Elevation: 0-2000 m
Ariz., Calif., Colo., Kans., Nev., N.Mex., Okla., Oreg., Tex., Utah, n Mexico.
Some American Indians used Anemopsis californica for a variety of medicinal purposes (D. E. Moerman 1986).