Plants perennial; cespitose, essentially glabrous throughout. Culms 30-130 cm. Sheaths open; ligules of hairs; micro hairsof blades with an inflated terminal cell similar in length to the basal cell. Inflorescences terminal, narrow, spikelike or somewhat open panicles; disarticulation above the glumes but not between the florets, these falling together. Spikelets with 3-5 florets, only the lower 1-3 bisexual. Glumes subequal, thin, membranous, 1-veined, acute; lemmas rounded on the back, hairy at least basally, obscurely (5)7(9)-veined, veins extending into scabridulous awns of unequal length, several additional narrow awnlike lobes usually also present, awns and lobes together forming a pappuslike crown; paleas textured like the lemmas, 2-veined, 2-keeled, keels scabrous or hairy; anthers 3; styles 2. Caryopses elliptical, plump, slightly dorsally flattened or nearly terete; embryos about 1/2 as long as the caryopses. x = 10. From the Greek pappos, pappus, and phoros, bearing, in reference to the pappuslike crown of the lemma.