Dracaena aletriformis grows from 1 m to 5 m in height. It is a soft-wooded, evergreen shrub or small tree. Dichotomously branched, branching may begin from the base.
The bark is pale grey to whitish, softly fibrous and smooth, but for the leaf scars. The strap-shaped, leathery leaves may become 1 m long and 12 cm wide. They grow spirally arranged in stem-tip rosettes, the leaf midribs not prominent, while the leaves fold in, their bases clasping.
The tree’s habitat ranges from dune forest understoreys, dense ravines and dry scrub to montane forest. It may form dense stands in shady places (Coates Palgrave, 2002; Pooley, 1993).