Plants up to 1.4 m tall, caespitose. Rhizomes very short, 5 mm in diameter. Shoot scales and basal leaves not developing extensive anthocyanin coloration (or sometimes small patches). Leaves dark green, glaucous, usually without conspicuous transverse venation. Basal leaf sheaths folded, old sheaths not becoming spongy; inner face splitting simply. Largest basal leaf blades about 485 × 12–16 mm, flat or plicate in cross-section; adaxial surface glabrous; abaxial surface papillate; margins proximally papillate, distally scabrid. Lowest culm leaf: sheath mouth convex, membranous; ligule 20 mm high, fuscous, membranous, apex acute or emarginate. Culms triangular in cross-section, 2.5–4.0 mm in diameter; internodes all of ± length, exposed; 2 nodes exposed. Inflorescence a raceme of spikes, 280–560 mm long. Basal inflorescence bract leaf-like, not reflexed near base of blade at maturity; sheath 50–225 mm long; blade 185–600 mm long; opposing bracteole tubular, membranous, usually concealed by bract sheath. Primary inflorescence units 1 from each node. Spikes 7–9, pendulous, not clustered, excepting frequently apical 2–3 (usually staminate) spikes; the largest 120–185 × 5–8 mm. Longest peduncle exserted by 15–100 mm, scabrid on angles. Apical spikes usually staminate, frequently androgynous, occasionally androgynecandrous or gynecandrous or with staminate and pistillate spikelets mixed. Staminate spikes 0–1. Pistillate spikes 0. Bisexual spikes 6–8. Small accessory spikes not present. Bracts of staminate spikelets not or only slightly dimorphic. Anthers 3.5–4.0 mm long. Bracts of pistillate spikelets lanceolate, 4.0–5.5 × 1.0–1.5 mm, longer and narrower than perigynium, golden-brown, with wide hyaline margins, glabrous; carina narrow, single-nerved; apex acute, very shortly awned or muticous; awn 0–0.3 mm long, margin scabrid, or glabrous. Mature perigynium suberect, stipitate, without a basal callus, rostrate, 2.5–3.5 × 1.0–1.5 mm, triangular in cross-section, slightly or not inflated, green or stramineous with rostrum whitish, without a layer of corky material, membranous, glabrous, nerves few (2 or 3) or inconspicuous; rostrum abrupt, 0.5–0.6 mm long, straight, margin not winged, glabrous; rostrum apex shallowly bidentate, apical teeth 0.25 mm long. Rachilla absent from perigynia. Style base slightly bent, or straight; stigmas 3. Mature nutlet obovate or elliptic, narrowly clawed, 1.8–2.0 mm 1.0–1.2 mm, triangular in cross-section, blackish, or fuscous with lighter angles, glabrous.