The snakeroot plant usually has several erect, branching, flowering stems. It ranges from 0.25 to 0.5 m in height, rarely reaching as high as 0.9 m. The leaves are clustered at the base of the plant. The basal leaves are long, stalked, and shaped like narrow wedges, with 3 to 5 bristle-tipped teeth at the apex. Stem leaves are smaller and lack leaf stalks. The flowers are small, with white petals, filaments, styles and stigmas but powdery blue anthers form small heads, with bristly bracts. The sepals and petals are each about 1.5 to 2 mm long.