Juncus sphacelatus Decne. in Jacquem.,Voy.Bot. 172,t.172. 1844. Buchen. in Bot.Jahrb. 6:225, 1885; Hook.f.,l.c.398; R.R. Stewart, l.c.40.
Erect perennial, stoloniferous and with creeping rootstock, tufted, 20-40 (-45) cm tall; stem fistular, terete, with basal leaves and 1-2 cauline leaves. Leaves usually not exceeding the stem, subrigid, setaceous-canaliculate, 1.5-2 mm broad, ± green, usually long-acuminate; sheaths brownish, with short rounded auricles. Inflorescence of 2-5, seemingly superposed to subcorymbosely congested heads, each usually with 3 or 6 flowers, brown; lowest bract equalling to exceeding the heads. Flowers (5-) 6-8 mm long, shortly pediceled or subsessile; perianth segments lanceolate, subequal, inner slightly longer, sub-obtuse, outer acute, brownish. Stamens slightly shorter than perianth; anthers c. as long as the filaments. Capsules 5-9 x 2-2.5 mm, oblong-ovate, conic above, with a beak upto 2 mm long, dark reddish-brown, many seeded; seeds c. 4 mm long, including long whitish tails at the ends.
A very variable species in arrangement of floral heads, flower size, and shape of capsules. It is not possible to separate Juncus himalensis Klotzsch from this species specifically, and it is reduced here to a varietal rank.