Gladiolus saundersii is an erect bulbous perennial that can reach heights up to 0.9m. The leaves are dark green, sturdy, erect and arranged in a fan and are about 250-600x6-25mm large with thickened margins and prominent veins. It bears inflorescence with a stout, straight stem with bracts of about 45mm long and red flowers about 60mm in diameter large, they are downward facing and strongly hooded and appear in summer between January and March. The fruits are a round capsule about 20mm in diameter. The flowers are edible and can be added to salads. They attract pollinating insects and birds to the garden.
Gladiolus saundersii is an ideal specimen for a mixed border and makes for a lovely feature in a rockery or less formal grassland type garden, especially when planted in groups together.