Perennial. c. 30 cm. Rhizome long-creeping, covered by brown or reddish-brown scales. Stem trigonous and slightly scabrous above, obtusely trigonous below. Leaves longer than stem; sheaths 35-50 mm, reddish-brown, finally disintegrating into fibres, margin of scarious side slightly concave; ligule c. 0.2 mm; blades 2.5-3.5 mm wide, flat, green or greyish green, margins revolute, margins and keel scabrous towards apex. Inflorescence of 1-2 male spikes, each with one basal utricle, and 3-4 female spikes. Bracts overtopping inflorescence, lowest with sheath up to 8 mm. Male spike 5-12 x 1-2 mm, fusiform, brown; male glumes 3-3.5 x 1-1.2 mm, ovate to obovate, acute or truncate, often with arista to 0.5 mm, brown, margins scarious. Female spikes 14-30 x 3-4 mm, cylindrical, green, lower with peduncle to 10 mm, erect; female glumes 2.7-3.1 x 0.8-1 mm, including up to 1.6 mm arista, ovate, cymbiform, acute or acuminate, brownish, scarious; utricles 3-3.7 x 1.1-1.4 mm, including up to 0.8 mm stipe, obovoid, suddenly contracted into beak, adpressed setaceous, green, beak 0.5-0.7 mm, cylindrical, upper part white or brownish, ostiole bidentate or oblique, with eroded, scarious margins. Stigmas 3. Nut 1.8-2.1 x 1-1.1 mm, including style base 0.3 mm and c. 0.3 mm stipe, ellipsoid or obovoid, trigonous, brown, reticulate with one conspicuous papilla in each areole.