is a low-growing plant producing dense clusters of stems, branched all along their length, with pinnately-lobed leaves at closely spaced intervals. Basal leaves tend to wither before flowering time. The overall leaf shape is oblanceolate around the base and more oblong higher up the stem. Lower stem leaves are divided into small lobes while the uppermost are undivided; all leaflets have a spine at the tip, a few (3 to 6) teeth along each edge, and a covering of long, bristly white hairs.
Phyllaries are in 4 to 5 rows; they are linear in shape, or slightly wider above the middle, and their tip tapers to a white bristle. The faces are noticeably hairy, unlike those of the similar xanthisma spinulosum
. Flowerheads have up to a hundred or more yellow/orange disc florets and between 12 and 26 yellow ray florets, a little less than half an in long.