Hardwickia binata is a moderate-sized to large tree, up to 24-30 m tall, girth 1.8-3 m with a clean cylindrical bole up to 12-15 m; graceful, drooping slender branches; crown conical in early life, becoming broader later. Bark of saplings almost silvery white and smooth, gradually changing as the tree gets older to dark grey and rough with irregular vertical cracks, 1.2-2.5 cm thick, exfoliating in narrow flakes. In isolated situations, or on poor soils, the tree tends to branch low down and produce a short bole, but when grown in a fairly crowded crop on favourable soil it produces a long, straight, cylindrical bole with an elevated crown. Leaves small, 2-6 cm long by 2-3 cm wide, alternate, pinnate, almost kidney shaped and greyish-green. Flowers small, pale yellowish-green in axillary and terminal lax panicled racemes. The pod flat and samaroid, 5-7.6 x 1-1.5 cm, oblong lanceolate, coriaceous, narrowed at both ends, with parallel longitudinal veins, containing 1 seed near the apex. The seed is exalbuminous, flat, averaging 0.8 x 0.3 in, in sub-reniform, pointed at one end and rounded at the other, with a fairly hard testa.