produces many broad green leaves around the base of the plant, and a smaller number along the stems. Leaf margins may be entire, have very fine teeth, or fewer, larger teeth. Upper leaves clasp the stem, while those lower down are stalked.
Not all plants bear flowers, but when in bloom the species is quite noticeable. A flowering stalk typically has between 1 to 5 heads (occasionally up to 15), each with a center of numerous yellow disc florets surrounded by between 40 and 80 ray florets, ranging in color from very pale pink to light purple, and in length from a half to nearly one inch. Underneath are several series of thin, green, glandular phyllaries, curving backwards, and often colored purple at the tips. The branching of the flower stalk generally occurs above the uppermost leaf.