Galenia africana var. africana is an erect, somewhat spreading, much-branched shrub that grows to 1 m in height.
The common name of kraalbos (pen or corral bush) comes from the profusion of these pioneer plants on land previously denuded by the hooves of livestock gathered for the night. It is often also seen on the verges of roads in degraded areas.
The distribution of G. africana var. africana in nature is large, in about the western half of South Africa, ranging from Namaqualand, throughout the Karoo and Little Karoo, slightly into the Eastern Cape.
The habitat is diverse and the plant often found on disturbed land. Its presence in large numbers is an indicator of overgrazing or poorly managed veld. The species is thought to be on the increase in representation and spread, therefore not threatened.
The plant is toxic to sheep and some other livestock, causing liver damage. Horses, donkeys and maybe zebras browse it, however, without ill effects. This brought about another common name of perdebos (horse bush) for this much seen plant (Riley, 1963; Vlok and Schutte-Vlok, 2010; http://redlist.sanbi.org).