Perennials, c. 25–60 (–100) cm tall, caespitose; rhizome densely branched to short creeping-ascending. Cataphylls 1–3; leaves (1–) 2–3, basal to sub-basal, 10–25 (–40) cm long, c. 0.5–1.2 mm wide, nearly terete, canaliculate or ±flat; auricles scarious to subcoriaceous, whitish to yellowish, sometimes suffused purplish, 0.2–0.5 mm long. Lower bract leaf-like, 2.5–19 cm long, usually exceeding inflorescence. Inflorescence subdense, less often ±loose, (1.0–) 2.5–10 (–13) cm long, (5–) 10–85 (–100)-flowered, of c. 1–3 primary branches bearing unilateral cymes with approximated solitary flowers. Bracteoles broadly ovate, membranous, 1.4–2.2 mm long; apex subobtuse to acute. Tepals subequal (outer ones often slightly longer), lanceolate, acute, (3.0–) 3.3–4.5 (–5.5) mm long; central band green, later stramineous-brown to brown; margins indistinct, membranous. Stamens 6, not exserted; anthers 0.4–0.8 (–1.0) mm long; filaments 0.6–1.2 mm long; style c. 0.2 mm long; stigmas c. 1.0–2.0 mm long. Capsule unilocular, ellipsoid to widely so, slightly narrowing to a ±obtuse apex, (2.5–) 2.8–3.5 (–4.5) mm long, tan to brown, ±thick-walled, shorter than or ±equalling perianth. Seeds ellipsoid to lunate, 0.3–0.4 mm long, to 0.2 mm wide, brownish, reticulate; appendages indistinct. 2n = 80, fide N.A.Harriman & D.Redmond, Rhodora 78: 728 (1976).