Plants annual or perennial; cespitose, sometimes stoloniferous or rhizomatous. Culms to 120 cm, not woody. Sheaths open; ligules membranous, ciliate; blades flat. Inflorescences terminal, panicles of 1-20 non-disarticulating, spikelike branches, exceeding the upper leaves; branches digitately or racemosely arranged, if racemose, the lower nodes usually with more than 1 branch. Spikelets solitary, strongly imbricate, appressed to somewhat divergent, dorsally compressed, with 2-6 florets, lowest floret bisexual, elongate, remaining florets progressively reduced, usually the distal florets rudimentary and sterile, occasionally staminate; disarticulation beneath the glumes. Glumes unequal, subulate to lanceolate, membranous; upper glumes much shorter than the lowest florets, acute or shortly awned; calluses strigose; lowest lemmas stiff, 3-veined, ridged over the midveins, apices acute or bidentate, usually awned from between the teeth, without lateral awns; paleas almost as long as the lemmas, 2-keeled and bidentate; distal lemmas awned; lodicules 2; anthers 1-3. Caryopses sulcate; embryos 1/4-1/3(1/2) as long as the caryopses. x = 10. Name presumably from the Greek enteron, intestine and pogon, beard, although the allusion is unclear.