The adults reach 6–9 millimetres (0.24–0.35 in) of length, but the females are quite larger than the males. Adult leafhoppers can mostly be encountered from July through October in wet meadows, near marshes or in swampy habitats, but sometimes live also in drier areas.
Their pronotum is green and yellow. The front head is pale yellow, with two black spots near the compound eyes. The forewings are turquoise green in the females, blue or dark bluish in males (sexual dimorphism).
They are polyphagous, feeding on the sap of various species of herbaceous plants, mainly Juncus (Juncaceae sp.), Carex (Cyperaceae sp.), Holcus (Poaceae sp.) and Fabaceae species.
The larvae are yellowish and have two brownish stripes running from head to the end of the abdomen. Cicadella viridis may have one or more generations per year. This species overwinters in the egg stage.