Description from Flora of China
Arborescent bamboos, large-sized; clumps dense. Rhizomes short necked, pachymorph. Culms unicaespitose, erect, or occasionally scrambling, apex usually pendulous; internodes terete. Branches several to many, none to 3 dominant. Culm sheaths deciduous; ligule conspicuous; auricles often absent or small; blade usually recurved, or erect. Leaf blades usually large; ligule conspicuous; auricles usually absent; venation not tessellate. Inflorescence iterauctant, fully bracteate, subtended by a narrow single-keeled prophyll, pseudospikelets clustered in soft or spiky globose mass at nodes of leafless flowering branches. Pseudospikelets prophyllate, (1 or)2–8-flowered, with or without rachilla extension and rudiment, sessile, fertile glumes preceded by 1 or more gemmiferous bracts and 0–2 empty glumes. Prophyll narrow, single-keeled. Rachilla internodes usually abbreviated and not disarticulating; florets falling together. Lemma broad, nearly equal to palea, many veined, sometimes long mucronate; palea of lower florets 2-keeled, but rounded or imperfectly keeled in terminal floret if rachilla extension small or absent, apex acute or shortly bifid; lodicules absent or variably 1–3. Stamens 6; filaments usually free, rarely united into a loose tube. Ovary stalked, apex thickened and hairy; style very short, solid; stigmas 1(–3), long, hairy, plumose. Caryopsis terete, apex hairy; pericarp slightly thickened. 2n = 76*.
Forty species: subtropical and tropical Asia; 27 species (15 endemic) in China, mostly in the southwest.
(Authors: Li Dezhu (李德铢); Chris Stapleton)