1. Erioscirpus comosus (Wall.) Palla, Bot. Zeitung, Abt. 2. 54: 151. 1896; Kukkonen in Rech.f, l.c. 50.
Scirpus comosus Wall. in Roxburgh, Fl. Ind. 1: 234. 1820. Eriophorum comosum (Wall.) Wall. ex Nees in Wight, Contr. Bot. Ind.: 110. 1834; C.B.Clarke, l.c. 664; R.R.Stewart l.c. 94; Eriophorum arundinaceum (Wall.) Wall. ex Nees in Wight, l.c.: 110. 1834. Clarke, Ill. Cyper., Tab. 57, figs. 6-7. 1909. Tang & Wang, Fl. Reip. Pop. Sinicae 11: Tab. 14 (1961).
Caespitose perennial, 15-45(-70) cm (excl. bracts). Rhizome short, erect or ascending. Stem 1-2 mm diam., terete or subterete, smooth or slightly scabrous. Leaves much overtopping stem; sheaths to c. 50 mm, brown or dark brown, glossy, mouth oblique; blades to much more than 50 cm, 0.5-4 mm wide, rigid, channeled, grey green, margins and mid-nerve below scabrous, apex long attenuate, flexuous, acute, scabrous. Inflorescence 5-12 cm; bracts, lowest 4-6 to c. 50 cm; primary branches 4 to more than 10, up to c. 10 cm, smooth; secondary anthelodiums up to 40 mm; secondary branches up to 25 mm; tertiary branches to c. 5 mm, with single spike or cluster of 2-4, mostly, sessile spikes. Spikes 5-14 x 2-3 mm, fusiform or narrowly ovoid, usually with less than 50 glumes; basal glume-like bract c. 2.1 mm; 2-6 glumes above sterile; glumes 2.6-4 x c. 1 mm, ovate, sides brown with red-brown, short striations, apex truncate, midnerve strong, mucro c. 0.5 mm. Perianth bristles numerous, c. 2-3 times as long as glumes, colourless, flexuous, smooth or with a few retrorse barbs; anthers 1.4-2.6 mm, connective tip 0.3-0.6 mm. Nut 3-3.4 x 0.3-0.6 mm, fusiform or narrowly ovoid, with tip 0.4-0.5 mm, obtusely trigonous, plano-convex, black-brown, finely reticulate and papillose.
Fl. Per.: March - April.
Type: Nepal, Wallich 3446 (K).
Rock crevices or shallow soil, on both granitic and calcarous rocks; 700-2300 m; Distribution: SE Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, east in Himalayas to Myanmar, China and N Vietnam.
Erioscirpus comosus resembles many spiked Eriophorum spp., but inflorescence is much larger, multiple spike or anthelodium. There are also anatomical differences and ecological requirements deviating from all Eriophorum spp.