The stems of Euphorbia restricta are four or five-angled with vertical rows of paired spines. The plant grows yellow cyathia in groups of three on or near stem tips. Blooming occurs in midwinter. The plant in picture was photographed in the Walter Sisulu National Botanical Garden in September, well past the stated flowering season, but with some cyathia still at varying stages of development.
The shields at the spine bases are pale grey and close to forming continuous ridges on the green stem surfaces. Some twisting of stems as well as spaced constrictions up the stems is in evidence (Germishuizen and Fabian, 1982).