Pillans, Trans. Roy. Soc. South Africa 16: 320 (1928)
Vegetative parts: plants tufted, 0.3–0.8 m tall, basal diameter 0.2–0.3 m, crown diameter 0.2–0.8 m, compact, without spreading rhizomes or stolons. Fertile culms branching or much branched, compressed near apex or compressed after pressing, solid or with a small central cavity, smooth or finely rugulose, green or olivaceous, 0.3–0.8 m tall, diameter at base 1–3 mm, diameter at apex 0.5–1 mm. Clusters of sterile branches at the nodes of the fertile branches absent. Sheaths more than 1 per culm, persistent, with no abscission line, loosely convoluted, 10–35 mm long, margins entire, reddish-brown to dark brown, often with lighter-coloured/yellowish/tan edges, upper 1/3 in colour and texture similar to the lower 2/3, apical margins coriaceous, like the rest of the body, hyaline shoulders absent, apex, excluding the membranous lobes, acute. Sheath-mucro penicellate, straight and erect, 1–2 mm long. Males: male inflorescence with 21–50 spikelets, paniculate, 35–55 mm long, 10–20 mm wide. Male inflorescence spathes persistent, taller than spikelets, cartilaginous. Male spathellae inconspicuous or absent. Male flowers in spikelets. Male spikelets erect on stiff pedicels or sessile, undifferentiated, apex undifferentiated, 3–7 mm, 1.5–3.5 mm, with 1–3 flowers, pedicels shorter than the spikelets or as long as the spikelets, terete or angular. Male bracts shorter than flowers, 1–1.5 mm long, oblong, acute, chartaceous, bract upper margin like body of bract, bract awn less than half as long as the bract body. Male flower 5–6.5 mm long. Male tepals sepals and petals the same rigidity, chartaceous, oblong, inner tepals longer than outer tepals (massively much so). Male outer lateral tepals as other tepals, glabrous. Anthers 3–4.5 mm long, included in the flowers. Females: female inflorescence interrupted or linear, 15–45 mm long, 10–15 mm wide, with 2–5 spikelets. Female spathes longer than the spikelets, obscuring spikelet, persistent, cartilaginous. Female spathellae inconspicuous or absent. Female spikelet pedicel simple, undifferentiated, 1–2 mm long, with 1–3 flowers, with 0 sterile bracts. Female bracts shorter than flowers, 0.5–1 mm long, ovate, acute, chartaceous, apical margin like rest of bract, same as body of bract, awn minute or absent. Female flower 0.7–1.3 mm long, without a fleshy pedicel, six tepals. Female tepals chartaceous or cartilaginous, glabrous and smooth, midrib flush with the tepal body, margins entire, apices obtuse or acute, inner whorl longer than outer. Female outer lateral tepals conduplicate, hidden by bracts, or bracts are shorter than flowers, 1.5–2.5 mm long. Female odd outer tepal oblong, 1.5–2.5 mm long. Female inner tepals square, 6–8.5 mm long. Styles 2. Style bases seated on a stylopodium (stout styles with free parts shorter than the stylopodium). Ovary with 1 locule, indehiscent. Fruit: indehiscent fruits with a softer ovary wall. Nut cap with several rows of ridges, wall smooth, (1.68–)1.95(–2.28) mm long, (0.88–)0.99(–1.08) mm diam., shape in side view oblong, shape in top view round in cross section or elliptical in cross section, brown or tan. Elaiosome absent.