Subshrubby and tufted with many spreading to ascending mottled to green stems up to 30cm in length. Leaves 1-2.5cm long, narrowly linear, revolute, short-lived. Flowers bright yelloew, 1-1.4cm across in small, terminal leafy panicles, late spring to mid-summer. California in sandy, rocky chaparral. H.s. var. vulgare jeps has larger panicles of slightly smaller flowers, up to 1200m in the coastal ranges. Var. aldersonii is 30-90cm tall, has flowers 1.6-2.4cm across and grows to higher altitudes (to 1500m).