Annual, tufted, hydrophytic. Leaf blade linear, expanded; ligule an unfringed to minutely fringed membrane. Inflorescence a false spike, with clusters of spikelets arranged in dense, globose clusters at intervals on a central axis or confluent and forming a cylinder; usually clusters subtended by enlarged, spreading glumes of lower spikelets, these linear and tapering into acuminate tips. Spikelet laterally compressed, disarticulating above glumes; glumes +/- equal to slightly unequal, shorter than to as long as spikelet, lanceolate, membranous, glabrous, 1-nerved, keeled, acuminate to aristate,awned or awnless. Florets 2-6; lower floret bisexual; uppermost floret sterile or male; lemma 3-nerved, keeled, hairy or glabrous, short central awn present; awn straight, shorter than body of lemma; palea shorter than lemma, variously lobed at apex, 2-keeled, keels narrowly to broadly winged, wings entire or variously notched. Lodicules 1 or 2, glabrous. Stamens 1-3. Ovary glabrous; styles 2; stigmas scantily plumose. Caryopsis with free pericarp. x= 13.
Species 2-4, tropical Africa, Asia and Australia; 2 in sthn Afr., Namibia, Botswana and northern provinces of South Africa.

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Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith