This species has the curious capacity to exist within the same population either as a robust multi-stemmed prostrate perennial like C. hymenodon or as an erect one to three-stemmed rather weakly annual, 4-12cm tall, the rootstock stout and delving or shallow and thin, accordingly. Leaves lanceolate, acute pointed, 3-40 by 1-10mm, those surrounding the inflorescence being largest. Sepals two, rounded, rounded-cordate, 7-10mm in diameter, bright yellow. Flowers 1-1.3cm long by 5-6mm across. Chile, in the central and southern Atacama, in desert scrublands and steppe at 500-2300m.