Jamesbrittenia calciphila is a woody shrublet that grows to 45 cm in height. The stems often appear gnarled, the plant usually prostrate. The plant has tiny, elliptic to obovate leaves, rarely more than 2 mm in length.
The flowers are pink-violet, blue or sometimes white. The flower tube is about 1 cm long, hairy and thin with a bend below the mouth. Wedge-shaped patches usually occur at the base of the petals outside the yellow flower mouth. In the picture these markings are bluish; they may also be red or yellow.
The plant grows on the limestone cliffs along the southern Cape coastline on the Agulhas Plain. The plant's survival is considered threatened early in the twenty first century (Mustart, et al, 1997; Manning, 2007; www.redlist.sanbi.org).