Plants hermaphroditic, caespitose, annual or perennial. Culms erect or ascending or decumbent, nodes glabrous or hairy;
internodes hollow, terete. Leaves cauline, not distinctly distichous; sheaths terete, margins open; auricles absent;
ligules membranous; blades flat, linear, lax. Panicles contracted (rarely racemes), primary branches
ascending to appressed. Spikelets solitary, laterally compressed, disarticulation above glumes, awned,
sessile or pedicellate; florets 3, reduced (membranes) florets 2 (below perfect floret), upper floret perfect
(jndurate), callus glabrous, rachilla not extended above upper floret; glumes 2, first 1-veined, second 3-veined,
unequal, second glume longer than first floret, glabrous, awnless ; lemmas 1-7-veined, chartaceous to indurate,
glabrous, apex entire, awnless or awned, awns when present dorsal, geniculate; paleas 1-2- veined or
veinless, awnless, glabrous. Stamens 2 (rarely 3); anthers yellow. Caryopses small. Base chromosome number x=5.
A small temperate genus of about 20 species. Species of meadows and grasslands that occur in sunlight or
shade. Our species are introduced disturbance taxa.