Platanthera stricta grows in wet areas, such as shady forest meadows. It produces a slender, erect flowering stem up to about 80 centimetres (31 in) tall. The longest leaves near the base of the stem are up to 11 centimetres (41⁄3 in) long by 2.5 centimetres (1 in) wide. The inflorescence has widely spaced green flowers, sometimes tinged red or purple. The sepals and petals are around one-half centimetre (1⁄4 in) long and each flower has a club-shaped spur.