Leaves of sedum lanceolatum
are small, narrow and succulent, circular in cross-section with blunt-pointed tips; they grow in tight basal clusters and at alternate intervals along the reddish stems, which branch towards the top to form a densely-packed, flat-topped inflorescence, containing between 3 and 24 heads. Stem leaves point upwards, are smaller than those at the base, and tend to wither by the time flowering begins. Basal leaves turn red late in the season.
Individual flowers have five narrow, lance-shaped, pointed-tipped petals and a ring of protruding stamens. Most flower parts are greenish-yellow in color, though the petals often have a red line on the outside, along the central rib. At the center of the flower is a five-lobed ovary, which transforms into reddish fruit in the fall.