Pachycarpus natalensis is a perennial herb that grows few erect branches, reaching heights around 45 cm. The plant is a resprouter after winter or fire. Plant parts contain a poisonous, milky latex.
The plant occurs in rocky grassland at high altitudes in the KwaZulu-Natal Drakensberg and in the north of the Eastern Cape. The species is not considered to be threatened in its habitat early in the twenty first century (Pooley, 1998; iSpot; http://pza.sanbi.org; http://redlist.sanbi.org).