Perennials, 30–90 (–110) cm tall, forming dense often tussock-like stands; rhizomes short-noded, densely branching, 2.5–5 mm thick. Stem leafless, terete, 1–2.5 mm thick, ±hard, green or glaucous; ridges 15–25, conspicuous; subepidermal sclerenchyma strands present, forming radial lamellae and some connected to medium-sized vascular bundles; epidermis cells larger on the ridges; bundles in 2–3 rows; pith of astericiform cells, continuous, becoming arachnoid and partly evanescent. Cataphylls 3–4, lax; longest cataphylls 4–10 cm long, abaxially dull, dark red-brown and ±glossy at base, distally stramineous, adaxially stramineous-brownish; upper cataphylls with up to 5 mm long awn-like blade. Lower bract 6–25 cm long, exceeding inflorescence, often curved; sheath narrow with c. 0.3 mm wide membranous margin. Inflorescence pseudolateral, 2–9 cm long, loose to congested, usually 15–40-flowered. Bracteoles 0.5–1.2 mm long, often unequal, ovate, acute, membranous. Outer tepals 2.3–3 mm long, equalling or slightly longer than inner ones, all narrowly lanceolate, acuminate-cuspidate, widely spreading around the ripe capsule, greenish, light brown or reddish with broad scarious margins. Stamens 6; anthers 0.4–0.6 mm long; filaments 0.6–1 mm long; style c. 0.1 mm long; stigmas c. 0.5–0.8 mm long. Capsule 2–2.7 mm long, equalling or exceeding perianth, subglobose-trigonous, shortly mucronate, trilocular. Seeds 0.4–0.5 × c. 0.3 mm, obovate, inconspicuously reticulate, dark amber; appendages absent.