Rhizomatous or tufted perennials. Culms erect, nodeless (in Australia). Leaves basal, often reduced to sheaths. Involucral bracts usually 1, exceeding inflorescence (in Australia). Inflorescence a pseudolateral or capitate sessile head of one to numerous spikelets with numerous flowers; glumes spirally arranged; hypogynous bristles absent; stamens 3; style 3-fid, not enlarged at base, deciduous. Nut trigonous, rarely lenticular, usually obovate, smooth, with a hypogynous cup-shaped or 3-lobed disc deciduous or persistent.
About 60 species, mostly in South Africa, 1 in Australia.