Perennials; culms slender, the leafy part of the erect culms with alternately long and short internodes; leaf sheath bearded at mouth; ligule short, truncate. Blades with margins involute when dry. Inflorescence composed of 2 to sever slender, digitately arranged spikes. Spikelets sessile, strongly laterally compressed, small, usually 1-flowered, unawned, alternate, imbricate along one side of rachis, with upper glume outside; rachilla articulate below lemma, protruding or not, sometimes with a rudimentary flower; glumes smaller than lemma; seldom equal, narrow, keeled, acute or mucronate, 1-nerved or upper glume 3-nerved, both or only the lower glume persistent; lower lemma boat-shaped, firmly herbaceous, keeled; lodicules 2, minute; stamens 3; ovary glabrous, the styles 2, free, the stigmas plumose, protruding sideways. Caryopsis oblong, terete or laterally compressed, the pericarp easily separating when soaked, the hilum linear; embryo small.
About ten species distributed in tropical and subtropical regions.
Two species are found in Taiwan.