Plants with hysteranthous leaves, solitary, inflorescence up to 50 mm high. Tuber irregularly-shaped, about 35 mm long and 30 mm wide; skin light brown, interior pink; growing point basal to lateral with a groove for the shoot. Old leaf sheaths up to 45 mm long and 3 mm wide, dull brown, membranous. Leaf solitary, erect; contemporary leaf sheath exserted up to 40 mm, 1.5-2.5 mm wide, covered in white, woolly hairs; lamina elliptic to lanceolate, up to 45 mm long and 20 mm wide, adaxial surface glabrous, light green, abaxial surface covered with white woolly hairs. Peduncular bract barely exserted, transparent, sheathing. Peduncle up to 18 mm long and about 1 mm diameter, pale green, covered with fine red stippling. Raceme short, compact, 25 mm long and 12-15 mm wide, with up to 12 flowers. Bracts triangular, cymbiform, 1.5 mm long, attenuate, apex curled up, membranous, white with a green midnerve covered with red stippling. Pedicels 5 mm long, erecto-patent, pale green with red stippling. Flowers with a short cup-like base, becoming triangular above, 8-9 mm diameter. Tepals dimorphic, connate 1 mm at the base, white with an olive green midnerve covered with faint red stippling; outer erecto-patent to recurved, linear-acute to narrowly lanceolate, 6 mm long and 1.8 mm wide, inner lanceolate, apex somewhat frilled, 4.8 mm long and up to 2 mm wide. Filaments adnate 1.5 mm up the tepals, sub-equal, somewhat arched with connivent anthers, triangular apiculate, 1.5 mm long, the outer a little over 0.5 mm wide, the inner nearly 1 mm wide, pale yellow or purple; anthers 0.8 mm long, yellow. Ovary ovoid, 1.5 mm long, 1.3 mm wide, green with red mottling. Style narrowly cylindrical, 1.8 mm long, white.
Diagnostic features:In the leafing stage E. glaciale may be distinguished by the erect, elliptic leaf with rather long, curly, white hairs on the underside. The very short peduncle and few-flowered, almost spicate inflorescence with triangular-shaped flowers are chiefly found in a few species which have leaves with enations.
E. glaciate is endemic to an area south of Nieuwoudtvile.
it has been found on clay soils in karroid vegetation.
Leafing period: April to September.
The specific epithet recalls the locality where the species was first encountered, amongst rocks showing the tracks of glaciers.