Mat or low, loose cushion-forming, with erect flowering stems to 6cm high. Leaves linear-lanceolate, 4-9.5mm long, velvety puberulent, slightly revolute or with a thickened margin, ciliate in the basal half. Floral bracts broadly elliptic-ovate, usually purplish at the base. Flowers 6-8mm long, purple to mauve, in head-like spikes. Greece, Crete, Turkey, Lebanon, on mountains steppes and rocky slopes at 1200-3000m. T.l. var. austroanatolicus has leaves lacking the velvety pubescence.