Vegetative parts: plants tufted, 0.2–0.4 m tall, basal diameter 0.01–0.05 m, crown diameter 0.1–0.3 m, compact, without spreading rhizomes or stolons. Fertile culms unbranched, smooth, olivaceous, 0.2–0.4 m tall, diameter at base 0.2–0.6 mm, diameter at apex 0.2–0.4 mm. Sheaths closely convoluted, 13–30 mm long, greenish initially, soon olivaceous and difficult to distinguish from the culm, apical margins narrowly membranous, hyaline shoulders small, rounded or membranous margins continuing behind awn, hyaline shoulder 0.05 of sheath body length, apex, excluding the membranous lobes, acute. Sheath-mucro penicellate, straight and erect, 2–3.5 mm long, sheaths difficult to distinguish from the culms. Males: male inflorescence with 1 spikelet or 2–5 spikelets (rarely more than 2 spikelets), racemose, 10–28 mm long, 5–12 mm wide. Male inflorescence spathes persistent, minute or like the floral bracts, coriaceous (but eventually lacerated), grey-brown. Male flowers in spikelets. Male spikelets erect on stiff pedicels or sessile, oblong (usually) or elliptical or obovate, apex rounded or obtuse, 6–15 mm, 3–6 mm, with 6–20 flowers, pedicels absent ie spikelets sessile. Male bracts taller than flowers, 2.8–5 mm long, oblong or ovate, acute or acuminate (especially in the northern Cederberg), cartilaginous, bract upper margin like body of bract, bract awn minute or absent, somewhat shiny brown to dark brown. Male flower 2.8–3.8 mm long. Male tepals sepals more rigid than petals, cartilaginous, petals membranous, linear or oblong, inner tepals shorter than outer tepals or inner and outer tepals the same length. Male outer lateral tepals conduplicate, keel sparsely villous. Anthers 1.2–1.6 mm long, exserted from the flowers. Pistillode present. Females: female inflorescence sparsely paniculate, 10–40 mm long, 3–15 mm wide, with 1 spikelet or 2–5 spikelets. Female spathes insignificant or shorter than the spikelets, persistent, coriaceous (soon apically lacerated). Female spikelet sessile, oblong or ovate or obovate, apex rounded, 6–15 mm long, with 3–6 flowers, with 3–6 sterile bracts. Female bracts taller than flowers, 3–7 mm long, oblong or ovate, acute or acuminate, cartilaginous, apical margin like rest of bract, same as body of bract, awn minute or absent. Female flower 2.8–4.2 mm long, without a fleshy pedicel. Female tepals cartilaginous, glabrous and smooth or keels of lateral sepals sparsely villous, midrib flush with the tepal body, apices acute or acuminate, inner and outer whorls the same length or inner whorl shorter than outer (slightly). Female outer lateral tepals conduplicate, 2.8–4.2 mm long. Female odd outer tepal linear or oblong, 2.5–4 mm long. Female inner tepals linear or ovate, 1.9–3.2 mm long. Staminodes present. Styles feathery, white, 3. Style bases free. Ovary with 3 locules, dehiscent. Fruit: seed (0.9–)1.08(–1.48) mm long, (0.5–)0.82(–1.02) mm in diameter, shape in side view oblong, shape in diameter rectangular in cross section, silvery or brown, colliculate.