Monadenium elegans belongs to the Euphorbiaceae (the Spurge family). It is a deciduous shrub or small deciduous tree that is endemic to Tanzania. This shrub grows in rocky slopes with mixed deciduous woodland, and up to a height of 3.5 m. It is sparsely branched. The branches are eventually pendulous, 7-15 mm thick, with groups of 3 slender spines. The central spine is to 18 mm long, the lateral ones are to 10 mm long. The leaves are crisped with a light red margin. The cyathia are tinged with red.