Herbs 2-5 cm tall, perennial, monocarpic, stemless. Rosette leaves sessile; leaf blade very narrowly triangular-ovate to linear but basally ovately widened, 2.5-20 × 0.3-1.3 cm, both surfaces glabrous, adaxially purplish red in basal part but green in apical part, margin entire, apex long acuminate. Capitula 2-25, in center of leaf rosette, in a hemispheric synflorescence 2-6 cm in diam., sessile. Involucre cylindric, 8-10 mm in diam. Phyllaries in ca. 5 rows, glabrous, basally hyaline, apically purple, apex rounded to obtuse and ciliate; outer phyllaries oblong or spatulate, 6-9 × 2-3(-5) mm; middle phyllaries narrowly oblong, 7-12 × 1.5-2 mm; inner phyllaries linear, 12-14 × 1-1.5 mm. Receptacle bristles white, 1-3 mm. Corolla purple, 1.3-1.7 cm, tube 0.8-1.2 cm, limb 5-6 mm, lobes 3-3.5 mm. Achene ivory-colored with dark spots, obconic, 2-3(-5) mm, obtusely 5-ribbed, glabrous, apex with a few-dentate ca. 1 mm crown. Pappus dirty white to light brown, in 1 row; bristles 0.9-1.3 cm, unequal in width, plumose, persistent. Fl. and fr. Jul-Sep.
Alpine grasslands, marshlands near rivers and lakes, wet meadows, bogs; 2000-5400 m. Gansu, Qinghai, W Sichuan, Xizang, NW Yunnan [Bhutan, India (Sikkim)].