Description from Flora of China
Rhagadiolus koelpinia Willdenow.
Herbs 5-35 cm tall. Stem solitary, slender, branched from base, glabrous or sparsely pilosulose, remotely leafy. Stem leaves linear to filiform, 4.5-15 × 0.1-0.5(-0.7) cm, glabrous or subglabrous. Synflorescence diffusely racemiform to paniculiform, with 2-5 capitula or capitulum solitary. Capitula with 5-9 florets. Involucre at anthesis cylindric, 5-7 mm. Phyllaries gla- brous or sparsely hairy, apex acute; outer phyllaries 2 or 3, narrowly triangular, ca. 2 × 0.5 mm; inner phyllaries 5, linear-lanceolate. Florets pale yellow, not or slightly exceeding involucre. Achene brownish, columnar-scorpioid, ca. 1 cm, abaxially with antrorse and apically with retrorse rigid hooked needlelike spines. Fl. and fr. Feb-Jul. 2n = 14, 36, 40, 42, 54, 56.
Gravelly deserts; 400-1000 m. Xinjiang, SW Xizang [Afghanistan, NW India, Kashmir, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Russia (S European part), Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan; N Africa, SW Asia, SW Europe].