Mem. Amer. Acad. Arts, n. s. 4: 23. 1849.
Plants perennial. Stems 3–5(–7), erect, yellow to yellow-green, (4–)6–18(–30) dm, rubbery when fresh, sometimes appearing slightly ridged or fasciated when dry, densely canescent. Leaf blades light green to yellow-green, deltate or elongate-deltate, unlobed or weakly 3-lobed, center lobe sometimes elongate, lobes relatively broad, 3–5(–7) cm, not rugose, rubbery, base cuneate or truncate to cordate, margins entire or crenulate to undulate, surfaces stellate-pubescent. Inflorescences paniculate, crowded, flowers long-interrupted, tip not leafy; involucellar bractlets green to tan. Flowers: sepals 3.5–6.5 mm, spheric in bud; petals red-orange to pale red, 10–17 mm; anthers yellow. Schizocarps hemispheric; mericarps 11–15, 4–5.5 × 2–2.5 mm, chartaceous, nonreticulate dehiscent part 60–75% of height, tip reflexed, indehiscent part not wider than dehiscent part, sides faintly to prominently and finely reticulate with thin-translucent areolae. Seeds 2 per mericarp, brown, glabrous or pubescent. 2n = 10, 20.
Phenology: Flowering summer.
Habitat: Sandy areas
Elevation: 1000–1900 m
Ariz., N.Mex., Mexico (Chihuahua, Coahuila, Sonora).
Sphaeralcea incana is often seen in relatively small groups. Fresh stems tend to be very rubbery and flower buds notably rounded.