Vegetative parts: plants clumped or mat-Forming or tangled (forming dense cushions among boulders), 0.2–0.5 m tall, basal diameter 0.5–1 m, crown diameter 0.5–1 m, with stolons. Fertile culms sparingly branched or branching, smooth, green or olivaceous, 0.2–0.5 m tall, diameter at base 0.8–2 mm, diameter at apex 0.5–1.5 mm. Sheaths closely convoluted, 10–25 mm long, dark brown, apical margins narrowly membranous, hyaline shoulders absent, apex, excluding the membranous lobes, acuminate or acute. Sheath-mucro penicellate, straight and erect, 2–10 mm long.
Males: male inflorescence with 1 spikelet (Very rarely, in the Swartberg) or 2–5 spikelets or 6–10 spikelets, globose (forming a tight button), 8–25 mm long, 7–25 mm wide. Male inflorescence spathes persistent, as tall as spikelets, coriaceous, rather similar to the lower bracts. Male flowers in spikelets. Male spikelets erect on stiff pedicels or sessile, oblong or elliptical, apex rounded or obtuse, 7–12 mm, 3–6 mm, with 3–10 flowers, pedicels absent ie spikelets sessile. Male bracts taller than flowers, 5.5–10 mm long, oblong, acuminate, cartilaginous, bract upper margin like body of bract, bract awn less than half as long as the bract body. Male flower 4.5–5 mm long. Male tepals sepals and petals the same rigidity, hyaline or membranous, linear or oblong, inner and outer tepals the same length. Male outer lateral tepals conduplicate, keel sparsely villous. Anthers 2–3 mm long, exserted from the flowers. Pistillode absent.
Females: female inflorescence globose (Forming a tight button), 10–25 mm long, 3–25 mm wide, with 1 spikelet (rarely, then mostly at the western and eastern extremes of the range) or 2–5 spikelets or 6–10 spikelets. Female spathes as long as the spikelets, persistent, coriaceous. Female spikelet sessile, elliptical, apex obtuse or acute, 10–20 mm long, with 5–15 flowers, with 4–5 sterile bracts. Female bracts taller than flowers, erect or reflexed, 5.5–10 mm long, oblong, acuminate, cartilaginous, apical margin like rest of bract, same as body of bract, awn less than half as long as the bract body. Female flower 5–6.5 mm long, without a fleshy pedicel. Female tepals cartilaginous, keels of lateral sepals sparsely villous, midrib flush with the tepal body, apices acute, inner and outer whorls the same length. Female outer lateral tepals conduplicate, 5–6.5 mm long. Female odd outer tepal oblong, 5–6.5 mm long. Female inner tepals oblong, 5–6.5 mm long. Staminodes absent. Styles feathery, white, 2. Style bases free (but adjacent). Ovary with 2 locules, dehiscent.
Fruit: seed 1.3–1.5 mm long, 1 mm in diameter, shape in side view elliptical, shape in diameter round in cross section, silvery, pitted.
Altitude 1300–2100 m. Rockiness of habitat pebbly, or bedrock. Bedrock TMS. Groundwater availability well-drained soils. Vegetation type fynbos. This is a species of rocky summits. On Matroosberg I found it growing on shady rock ledges, well protected from fire, and quite cool, but dry. This is consistent with most habitat notes, which indicate cool, dry places, associated with rocky or rock pavement, or ledges. Possibly these are all fire-protected habitats. In the Swartberg it is very common on the upper ridges, where it is matforming, and a dominant element. Plants coppicing from the rhizome or base after fire (Linder 7912). Seed dispersal mode undifferentiated.
Distribution in Western Cape; the Cape Floristic Region Northern mountains or South-western mountains or Swartberg and Little Karoo; Wideranging on the higher peaks, from Sneeukop in the Cederberg to Mannetjiesberg in the Kamannassie and Meiringspoortberg in the Groot Swartberg. Most collections are from the Slanghoek mountains, reaching to Olifantsberg in the Rivierzondereinde, but the species is absent from the lower coastal mountains: the Kogelberg, Kleinriviersberg and the Cape Peninsula. Occurrence in Provincial Conservation Areas or National Parks in the Western Cape Cedarberg or Hex or Groot Winterhoek or Limietberg or Nuweberg or Towerkop or Swartberg or Kammanassie.