This plant is one of the smaller members of the Iridaceae family (30 to 40 cm tall).
The leaves are glossy, sword-shaped with lightly thickened margins, mostly 6-15mm wide and about half as long as the plant.
The flower grow from corms which produce erect spikes of showy flowers which vary from pink to purple or orange.
Flowering time of W. laccata in nature is from September to November following low temperature and the winter-rainfall season.
The genus Watsonia has about 52 species and is centred in the southwestern parts of Western Cape but extends into Namaqualand, and is also found further north in southern KwaZulu-Natal and on the escarpment in Mpumalanga and Swaziland .