T: [Cape Provinces] Liesbeek R., C.H.Bergius; syn: B [destroyed]; Paarl, Berg Rivier, J.F.Drège a; syn: K, P. <br>Juncus quartinianus A.Rich., Tent. Fl. Abyss. 2: 339 (1851). T: [Ethiopia] Shire [Chir2], R.Quartin-Dillon & A.Petit; holo: P; iso: K, L.
Perennials, (25–) 30–70 (–80) cm tall, densely caespitose; rhizome short, horizontal, thick, short-noded, in running water with nodal roots and innovations; stem terete. Cataphylls 0–2 (–3); basal leaves 1–2. Cauline leaves 2–3, terete, unitubular, distinctly perfectly septate, of variable length (8–50 cm), c. 1–2 mm wide; auricles obtuse, oblong-rounded, 0.8–2.0 mm long, yellowish-subcoriaceous to ±scarious. Lower bract leaf-like, 0.5–2.5 mm long, much shorter than inflorescence. Inflorescence compound to decompound, often divaricate, usually 3–15 cm long, of 3–15 semiglobose to ±globose, c. 9–20-flowered heads of ±rigid branches. Capitulum bracts pale brownish to scarious, aristate. Tepals ±equal, lanceolate, c. 3.2–4.5 mm long, acuminate; central band greenish to stramineous-brown bordered red-brown to castaneous; margins broad, membranous. Stamens 3, less often to 6; anthers 0.5–0.8 mm long, shorter than 0.7–1.0 mm filaments; style 0.1–0.2 mm long (rarely to 0.4 mm); stigmas red, c. 1.5 mm long. Capsule oblong-ovoid, trigonous, unilocular, subobtuse, apiculate, rarely acute, c. 2.8–4.1 mm long, castaneous-brown, shining, subequalling perianth. Seeds ellipsoid-ovoid, c. 0.5–0.6 × 0.2–0.3 mm, apiculate, pale brown, longitudinally c. 15–20-striate, irregularly transversally reticulate; appendages absent.