Perennials, 80–150 (–200) cm tall, densely caespitose; shoots intravaginal; rhizome short. Stem 2–4 (–6) mm in diam. Basal leaves up to 10, 25–110 cm long, 2–4 mm in diam.; leaf sheaths broad, basally brown, forming a thick cover around the base. Lower two bracts leaf-like, pungent, with longer one 8–25 (–40) cm long including a 4–8 cm long sheath, usually shorter than inflorescence; middle bracts small, amplexicaul, with small pointed blade; head bracts shorter than flowers, ovate, acuminate. Inflorescence (13–) 20–40 × (2–) 5–10 (–15) cm, ±lax, often storied, of (60–) 200–500 or more (1–) 2–4 (–6)-flowered heads. Tepals 2.2–3.0 mm long, equal or with the inner ones slightly longer; margin scarious; outer tepals slightly broader apically; mucro to 0.2 mm long; inner tepals oblong, obtuse, distally widely bordered silvery hyaline and cucullate, not or slightly notched. Bracts and tepals ±conspicuously red punctulate-striulate. Stamens 6, 2/3–3/4 as long as tepals; anthers 1.1–1.7 mm long, (2.5–) 4–6 times as long as filaments; style 1–1.5 mm long; stigmas 1.5–2.5 mm long. Capsule 2.5–3 mm long, exceeding tepals, trigono-ovoidal to spheroidal, abruptly contracted to (0.1–) 0.3–0.6 mm mucro, dark brown, trilocular, 25–35-seeded. Seeds 0.6–0.8 × 0.25–0.35 mm, or 0.85–1.5 mm long including appendages, narrowly ovoid, c. 20-striate; appendages ±unequal.