Leaves glabrous, ± fleshy, obovate, to 17 × 6 cm., apex acute, margin toothed and undulate, midrib keeled and toothed on the lower surface.
Small tree to 6 m. high; stem ± 15 cm. in diameter, sparsely-branched, with peeling yellowish brown papery bark; branches 12–25 mm. thick, with groups of 3 stout spines below the leaf-scars in 5 longitudinal series, the central spine to 14 mm. long, slightly recurved, the lateral ones (modified stipules) to 7 mm. long.
Capsule exserted on a pedicel to 1 cm. long, acutely 3-lobed, ± 8 × 7 mm., pubescent.
Seeds oblong, truncate at both ends, 3.5 × 2.3 mm., brown, minutely tuberculate; caruncle stipitate, pointed, 1.2 mm. in diameter.
Cymes on peduncles to 11.5 cm. long and to 13 mm. thick, longitudinally ridged, with a pair of short spines at the apex, to 8-forked, with cyme-branches 1–4 cm. long, the upper ones minutely pubescent, the whole inflorescence forming a dense head, green flushed with red; bract-cup ± 8 × 15 mm., notched to halfway between rounded apices and keeled crenulate midribs, pubescent.
Cyathia ± 8 × 5 mm., with barrel-shaped involucres, pubescent; glandular rim 5 × 4 mm., pubescent on both surfaces; lobes oblong, 5 × 2 mm., deeply divided into 5 segments, pubescent.
Male flowers: bracteoles very few, laciniate, plumose; stamens 7 mm. long.