Description from Flora of China
Elaeagnus rhamnoides (Linnaeus) A. Nelson; Rhamnoides Hippophae Moench.
Shrubs or trees, 1-15(-18) m tall. Bark brownish green, yellowish brown, or black; branches many, spines 2-7 cm. Leaves alternate; petiole ± absent; leaf blade abaxially silvery white suffused with brown or yellow, adaxially dark grayish green, linear or linear-lanceolate, 2-8 × 0.2-0.8 cm, ± narrowed at base, abaxially with white and brown stellate scales, margin ± revolute, apex subobtuse. Male inflorescence a minute spike, 5-8 × 4-6 mm. Male flowers: calyx lobes greenish brown, ovate-orbicular, 3-4 × 3-3.5 mm, concave, outside with numerous brown and sparse white stellate scales; stamens 1/2-2/3 as long as calyx; anthers nearly sessile, oblong-linear, ca. 1.5 mm. Female flowers 2-5 in axils of branchlets; pedicels ca. 0.5 mm, to 5 mm in fruit; calyx brown, tubular, oblong-obovate, 2.5-4 × 1-1.5 mm, outside with stellate brown and few white scales, lobes obtuse, interior with rather long white hairs, dense in upper part; Ovary globose-ovoid, 1-2 mm, ca. 1/2 as long as calyx, glabrous; style ca. 0.5 mm; stigma oblong, 0.5-1 mm, exserted. Peduncle 1-7 mm. Fruit orange or reddish, globose, ovoid, globose-ovoid, or ellipsoid, terete, 4-9(-10) × 3-8 mm, glabrous, succulent and aromatic. Endocarp easy to separate from seed. Seed dark brown, sometimes nearly black, glossy, ovoid-oblong, or oblong-ellipsoid, 4-7 × 1.5-2 or 4-5 mm. Fl. Apr-May, fr. Sep-Oct. 2n = 24*.
Hippophae rhamnoides subsp. rhamnoides is found in coastal N Europe, from France and Ireland east to the E Baltic. There are a further three subspecies recognized from Europe and C and SW Asia.
River banks and terraces, dry river beds, forest margins, thickets on mountain slopes, moraines, meadows at highest elevations; 600-4200 m. Gansu, Hebei, Nei Mongol, Qinghai, Shaanxi, Shanxi, Sichuan, Xinjiang, N and SE Xizang, Yunnan [Afghanistan, India, Kashmir, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan; SW Asia, Europe].