Perennials, 50–100 cm tall, densely caespitose; shoots intravaginal; rhizome short. Stem rigid, usually 2–4 mm in diam. Basal leaves 2–6, 25–100 cm long, 1.5–3.0 mm in diam. Lower two bracts leaf-like, pungent, 4–15 (–20) cm long, including 2–4 (–7) cm long sheath, shorter than inflorescence; middle bracts ±without blades, base broad, amplexicaul; bracts subtending heads shorter than flowers. Inflorescence 5–20 (–40) × 2–7 cm, lax to ±dense, of (10–) 50–200 usually 2–3-flowered heads. Flowers hermaphrodite. Tepals 2.5–3.0 mm long, with inner tepals slightly longer, with border broad, scarious; outer tepals with narrow scarious wings above, obtuse and mucro up to 0.4 mm; inner tepals with broad distal auricles, notched, with mucro very short. Stamens 6, equalling tepals; anthers 1.2–1.9 mm long, 4–5 times as long as filaments; style 0.8–1.3 mm long; stigmas 1.5–2 mm long, contorted. Capsule 2.5–3.5(–4) mm long, exceeding tepals, subglobose to trigono-ovoid, dark brown to castaneous above, triseptate, c. 25–60-seeded; apex pyramidal, with mucro 0.2–0.5 mm. Seeds 0.8–1.1 mm long, 1.5–2.0 mm long including appendages, inconspicuously reticulate with 25–30 longitudinal striae; appendages ±equal. 2n = 48, fide S.Snogerup, Willdenowia 23: 42 (1993).