Perennials, usually 20–45 cm tall, caespitose; rhizome short, erect to ascending; stolons absent. Basal leaves ±numerous, usually 7–13 cm × 3–4 mm, ±sparsely ciliate; leaf tip obtuse ±swollen. Cauline leaves (1–) 2 (–3), canaliculate, 5–8 cm × 2–3 mm, sparsely ciliate. Lower bract herbaceous, shorter than or equalling inflorescence, usually obtuse, rarely subacute; middle bracts often acute; upper bracts membranous, acute. Inflorescence erect, terminal, with a spike-like raceme of flower clusters, usually 2.5–5.0 × 0.5–1.0 cm, often with a similar spike-like group of clusters developed in the axil of the uppermost cauline leaf on an (up to) 8 cm long erect peduncle which reaches the main part of inflorescence; uppermost flower clusters ±congested; middle and lower clusters ±remote, with most of the lower clusters lax, with basal and middle flowers remote and rhachis visible. Bracteoles c. 2 mm long, fimbriate-ciliate, shorter than tepals. Tepals ±equal, dark castaneous-brown to blackish brown; outer tepals acuminate; inner tepals mucronate to acute, (2.3–) 2.5–3.1 (–3.5) mm long. Stamens 6; anthers (0.7–) 0.8–1.1 (–1.2) mm long, slightly to twice longer than 0.5 mm long filaments; style 0.3–0.6 mm long; stigmas 1.8–1.9 mm long. Capsule ovoid, castaneous brown; apex slightly trigonous; capsule segments usually 2.5–2.9 × 1.5–1.6 mm. Seeds ovoid, dark castaneous brown, 1.1–1.2 mm long, 0.8–0.9 mm wide; appendage c. 0.4 mm long.