The leaves of Cynanchum ellipticum grow opposite and well-spaced on longish petioles. The leaf-shape is elliptic or oval with pointed or rounded tips, sometimes with a pronounced protruding, acute point. The leaf base is square to rounded or slightly lobed. The margins are entire, sometimes wavy and irregularly curving or ragged.
The blades are bright to dark green and glossy above. The midrib and ascending lateral veins are prominent on the lower leaf surface. Leaf dimensions are 2 cm to 4 cm by 1 cm to 2 cm.
Umbels of creamy-white, small, fragrant flowers grow from leaf axils. Flowering is in winter but sometimes out of season.
The fruit is a single, slender follicle tapering to an acutely pointed tip. In picture it is wrinkled longitudinally, pale greenish grey in colour with scattered purple blotches. The seeds released when the follicle opens have downy white attachments for an air-borne journey aided by wind (Pooley, 1998; Moriarty, 1997; iSpot).