Plants herbs, erect, loosely to densely matted, not scapose, 1–5 dm tall, 1–10 dm across, tomentose or glabrous; stems spreading to erect, with or without persistent leaf bases, up to 1⁄4 height of plant, the caudex stems absent or spreading to matted, the aerial flowering stems erect to spreading, slender, solid, not fistulose, 1–3 dm long, tomentose or glabrous; leaves basal, 1 per node, the petioles rarely twisted or curled, 1–6 cm long, mostly tomentose, the blades elliptic to ovate, 0.5–2.5 (4) cm long, (0.3) 0.5–1.5 cm wide, lanate, tomentose to floccose on both surfaces, sometimes sparsely tomentose to floccose and greenish or floccose to subglabrous or glabrous adaxially, the margins plane; inflorescences umbellate-cymose to cymose, 1–20 cm long, 3–25 cm wide, the branches dichotomous, tomentose to floccose or less often glabrous, the bracts 3, scalelike, triangular, 1–3 mm long; peduncles absent; involucres 1 per node, rarely 2–5 per cluster, narrowly turbinate to turbinate-campanulate, 4–6 mm long, 1.5–5 mm wide, tomentose or glabrous, the teeth 5, erect, 0.5–1.3 mm long; flowers 3–5 (6) mm long, the perianth yellow or white to rose or purple, glabrous, the hypanthium only at base of perianth, the tepals dimorphic, those of outer whorl elliptic to nearly orbiculate, 2–3 mm long and wide, those of inner whorl oblanceolate to oblong, 3–4 mm long, 1–2 mm wide, the stamens included to slightly exserted, 2–5 mm long, the filaments pilose proximally; achenes light brown to brown, 3– 3.5 mm long, glabrous.
- Inflorescence branches glabrous : Eriogonum strictum var. strictum
- Inflorescence branches tomentose to floccose:
- Perianth yellow : Eriogonum strictum var. anserinum
- Perianth white to rose or purple:
- Leaf blades grayish-tomentose to floccose on both surfaces, or greenish-tomentose to floccose adaxially: Eriogonum strictum var. proliferum
- Leaf blades densely whitish-lanate to tomentose on both surfaces: Eriogonum strictum var. greenei.
Eriogonum strictum var. greenei : Plants dense mats, 2–10 dm wide; leaf blades ovate, 0.5–1 cm long, densely white-lanate to tomentose on both surfaces; inflorescences 3–5 cm long, the branches tomentose; involucres 4–6 mm long, 2–3 mm wide, tomentose; flowers 4–5 mm long, the perianth white.
Flowering Jun-Sep. Rocky, typically serpentine flats, slopes, and ridges, sagebrush communities, montane conifer woodlands; 1500–2400 m; North Coast Ranges of northwestern California (Colusa, Humboldt, Lake, Mendocino, Siskiyou, Tehama, and Trinity cos.).