Annuals, to 40 cm (herbage sweetly scented). Stems erect, branched distally, usually glandular-puberulent (often with longer non-glandular hairs as well). Leaves linear, 15-60 × 0.5-5 mm, (not fleshy) margins entire or 1-2-pinnately lobed, faces hairy. Involucres hemispheric to obconic, 4-7 mm. Phyllaries 6-14, lanceolate to ovate, hairy. Receptacles conic, smooth, muricate, or pitted, hairy. Ray florets 6-15; (corollas yellow) laminae linear-oblong or oblong, 3-10 mm. Anther appendages elliptic, acute (style apices ± deltate with apical tufts of hairs and subapical fringes of shorter hairs). Cypselae black, linear to narrowly clavate, to 2.5 mm, hairy; pappi usually of 5-6+ lanceolate to ovate scales (1-5 uniaristate), sometimes of 4-5 subulate, aristate scales, or 0. 2n = 8, 10.
Flowering Mar-May. Sunny, open grassy areas; 0-700 m; Calif.; Mexico (Baja California).
Pappus, head size, and branching pattern vary in Lastheniacoronaria. Two types of pappi are often found within a head and sometimes in different individuals of a population. The most distinctive feature of this species is its glandular herbage, which produces a characteristic sweet scent not present in any other lasthenia.