Description from Flora of China
Perennial or sometimes annual. Culms tufted. Leaf blades usually narrow, often convolute. Panicle contracted, sometimes spikelike or capitate. Spikelets with 2–3(–6) florets, lowermost floret bisexual, second floret smaller, usually staminate, remaining florets reduced to barren lemmas forming a brushlike apical clump; glumes lanceolate, unequal with the upper longer, 1- to several-veined; lemmas papery to leathery, smooth or ribbed, villous below middle, veins extended into 7–9 awns forming a circlet around top of lemma; awns stout and ciliate for much of their length, slender and scaberulous toward tips.
Twenty-eight species: tropics and subtropics, especially Africa and Australia, extending to temperate E Asia; two species in China.