Stoloniferous perennial, 25-55 cm. Rhizome 2-3.5 mm diam., internodes short, with dark, rather long, overlapping strongly nerved scales. Stem trigonous, grooved, smooth. Leaves c. 1/2 stem length to c. equalling it; sheaths 20-80 mm, outermost short, frequently deep red, or grey, margin of scarious side straight or slightly concave; ligule to 0.5 mm, frequently ciliate; blades 2.5-5.5 mm wide, rigid or flexuous, flat or carinate and margins revolute, scabrous. Inflorescence a small paniculodium with 3-5 partial inflorescences, all re-branched, peduncles to 12 cm. Bracts flat or carinate, margins scabrous, from shorter than spike to overtopping inflorescence, sheaths to 25 mm. Peduncles flat, grooved, scabrous, 1-2 in each leaf axil. Partial inflorescences androgynous, proportion of male/female flowers variable; cladoprophylls occasionally fertile. Male glumes 3.2-3.7 x 1.6-1.7 mmm, cymbiform, obtuse or acute and mucronulate, glossy, with narrow, scarious margin. Female glumes 1.8-2.4 x 1.2-2.1 mm, cymbiform, margins scarious, mid-nerve prominent, acute or with scabrous mucro up to 0.2 mm. Utricles 3.1-3.9 x 0.9-1.3 mm, trigonous, fusiform, hispid along lateral nerves, stipe up to 0.3 mm, beak 1-1.2 mm, ostiole bifid or oblique, margins widely scarious. Stigmas to 6 mm. Nut 2-3 x 0.9-1.1 mm, incl. a 0.2-0.7 mm stipe and a 0.3-0.6 mm style base, trigonous, fusiform, light brown to brown, glossy, finely reticulate with papilla in each areole.