Dwarf owl-clover is a slender, erect plant with one main stem or perhaps several branched stems rising from 4-20 cm. It is very slender in appearance and its herbage is covered with small, rough, and spreading hairs. The leaves are linear to lanceolate tapering gradually to the tip. Individual leaves range from 2-6 cm long and may be entire or have 3-5 slender, linear lobes.
The inflorescence is dense and compacted with several flowers. The bracts are similar to the leaves but shorter and broader while the calyx teeth are sharp-pointed and shorter than the corolla. The corolla is light yellow to reddish-purple and ranges from 4-6 mm long. The galea is straight and pointed, often with a slight hook at the tip and the lower lip consists of 3 sac-like swellings.
Dwarf owl-clover is a lowland wildflower of moist open meadows, pastures, and grassy slopes.
Dwarf owl-clover may be found west of the Cascade Mts. from southern British Columbia to California.
In the Columbia River Gorge, it may be found between the elevations of 100'-2000' from near Dog Mt. east to Rowena.