The buds of Vernonia oligocephala grow in dense clusters at stem tips. The plant produces many erect stems that branch at the base, rarely higher up. The taller ones will produce branched inflorescences, the panicles having few or many capitula (flowerheads).
Flowering happens from late winter to early summer, peaking in the spring months. The plant in picture is a bit late, producing its new growth in January in Pretoria (Pooley, 1998; Van Wyk, et al, 1997; www.plantzafrica.com).