Description from Flora of China
Stipa pappiformis Keng, Sunyatsenia 6: 71. 1941.
Perennial, rhizomatous. Culms 90–150 cm tall, 3–5-noded. Leaf sheaths glabrous, lower equaling and upper much shorter than internodes; leaf blades rolled or lower blades almost flat, 40–50 cm, 2–4 mm wide, scabrid, apex setiform; ligule ca. 1 mm. Panicle open, up to 30 cm; branches usually 2–3(–4) per node, filiform, up to 15 cm, glabrous, lower part bare, upper part densely spiculate. Spikelets yellowish green, rarely gray brown at apex; glumes subequal or upper slightly longer, narrowly lanceolate, 8–10 mm, 3-veined, apex attenuate; lemma 6–7 mm, 3-veined, spreading pappuslike ca. 5 mm hairs in upper part, sparsely pubescent below with 0.5–1 mm hairs, apical lobes 1–2 mm, slenderly acuminate; awn 0.5–0.7 cm, minutely hispidulous, slightly twisted below. Lodicules usually 3, 1–1.2 mm. Anthers 3–3.5 mm. Fl. and fr. Jul–Oct.
This species closely resembles species of Stephanachne, but lacks a rachilla extension.
The combination "Achnatherum pappiforme (Keng) Keng" (Claves Gen. Sp. Gram. Prim. Sin. 106, 213. 1957) was not validly published because a full and direct reference to the basionym was not provided.
* Forest fringes, grassy mountain slopes, river banks; 3400–4300 m. Gansu, Qinghai, Sichuan, Xizang, Yunnan.