The honey-scented flower-heads of the donkey’s ears or Oldenburgia grandis are velvety, whitish and daisy-like, emerging solitary from the centre of stem-tip leaf rosettes. The involucre at the flowerhead base is rounded.
When the flower-heads mature they assume the characteristic hairy thistle-like flat-topped appearance. There is a multitude of creamy stamens, surrounded by purplish ray flowers that later change to an orange-brown colour when the fruit develops. The flowerhead diameter is about 10 cm to 13 cm.Flowering happens sporadically throughout the year.
The seed-head finally breaks open to release brown nutlets with bristles attached at their tips (Coates Palgrave, 2002; www.plantzafrica.com).