Perennial, tufted herb from fibrous roots; stems triangular, 20-50 cm tall, exceeding the leaves.
Sheaths tight; blades flat, 2-4 mm wide, borne on the lower 1/3 of the stem.
Spikes 4 to 8, aggregated into an elongated head 1-2.5 cm long, unstalked, with both female and male flowers, the female ones towards the tips; bracts subtending the spikes sheathless, reduced, inconspicuous, the lowermost often awnlike.
Perigynia egg-shaped, 4-5 mm long, 2-2.5 mm wide, dark brown, the margins winged nearly to the bases, the upper 1/2 fringed with teeth, lightly several-nerved on the back, strongly nerved below, the beaks shallowly bidentate, up to 2 mm long, narrowly margined and toothed below; female scales elliptical, pointed, reddish-brown, with broad translucent margins and lighter centres, longer and wider than the perigynia; stigmas 2; achenes lens-shaped, 1.6 mm long.
Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia