Densely tufted plant with smooth 3-sided stems, 30-120cm. Keeled bright-green leaves, sharply narrowed to tips, shorter than stems. Single pale orange-brown male spikelet. 2-4 widely separated female spikelets, upper erect, lowest long-stalked, drooping. Green fruit, often with many small red dots, deep-forked beak.
Moist woodland on heavy soils, prefers shade but sometimes found in damp meadows, edges of reedbeds. Mainly N and S of Ireland, very infrequent in centre.
Identification confirmed by Paul Green, Co.Wexford