Periods of heavy grazing pressure affect the way the plant grows and this is easily observed at fixed photo-record sites. Where pasture condition is improving, the companion desirables that are expected to increase in density include ruby saltbush, ribbon grass, currant bush, silky browntop, cotton bush, narrow leaf mulla mulla and Wilcox bush.
Tall saltbush is moderately palatable to livestock and goats, and less palatable to kangaroos. It sheds some of its leaves during drought. The foliage contains little salt.
In grass-dominated pastures, tall saltbush often persists with wait-a-while (Acacia cuspidifolia), bardie bush, mingah (Alectryon oleifolius) and curara (Acacia tetragonophylla). These persistent shrubs contribute most of the livestock fodder intake when the dominant grass becomes unpalatable, which occurs when crude protein level in the grasses falls below the maintenance requirement of 6%.
Tall saltbush is a silvered grey-green branched shrub that has a scrambling habit when under the canopy of taller protective plants. The leaves are spear-head shaped, sometimes lobed at the base. They are usually up to 2cm long by 1cm wide. Very short waxy hairs on the leaves give tall saltbush its silver appearance. Male and female flowers are produced on separate plants and form upright clusters. Mature female fruits are carried in bunches of succulent red berries up to 3mm across.