Celmisia semicordata forms a cluster of stout leaves, 12–24 in (30–60 cm) high. The stiff, leathery, silver-green leaves are spear-shaped, white underneath, and up to 24 in (60 cm) long. The flowers are large daisies.
This is the largest of the genus, found in the wetter mountainous areas of South Island, New Zealand, and less commonly, in drier areas, and lowland areas. It was called Celmisia coriacea, but this is incorrect; as the name Celmisia coriacea is used for a plant formerly called Celmisia lanceolata.