Stems erect, green, only occasionally developing some red or purple, usually with primary and some secondary branches, 10-70 cm, ultimate branches often long and cylindric; leaf and bract apices usually obtuse, not mucronate. Spikes cylindric, 2-8 cm, with 5-25 fertile segments; bracts covering only base of cymes. Fertile segments (2d-4th in main spikes) ± cylindric, 3.2-7.6 × 2.4-5 mm, usually longer than wide, margins 0.3-0.4 mm wide, scarious. Central flowers oval or rhombic to semicircular distally, 1.7-3.5 × 1.4-2.7 mm, usually longer than wide, usually not conspicuously larger than lateral flowers, usually not reaching distal edge of segment; anthers always exserted, 0.3-0.5 mm, dehiscing after exsertion. 2n = 36.