Perennial forb to 60cm tall, aquatic or in mud. At least the upper stems of the plant hairy, rarely hairless. Emergent leaves in whorls of 5-9, the lower leaves deeply segmented, comb-shaped, with 6-8 linear segments, the uppermost cylindrical in cross-section, mostly 0.5-2cm long. Submerged leaves in whorls of 5-8, 1.5-5.5cm long, with 12-20 linear segments. Submerged leaves often absent in terrestrial or marsh plants. Male and female flowers on the same plant, often small (less than 3mm across). Male flowers with 4 cream to reddish brown or purple petals. Female flowers small, with 0 petals, 0 sepals, with 4 white to pink stigmas, the ovary deep red. Flowers solitary at the bases of the leaves. Vulnerable SA.