35. Cyperus steadii Kükenthal, Feddes Repert. 29: 199. 1931; Kukkonen in Rech.f., l.c. 130. t. 23, f. 3.
Small tuft-forming annual, 7-20 cm. Stem 0.5-1 mm diam., soft, trigonous or obtusely trigonous, smooth, stem base bulbous. Leaves longer than stem; sheaths to 50 mm, grey or yellowish, soft, nerve-less, mouth margin slightly concave; blades to c. 16 cm, c. 1 mm wide, channelled, margins smooth, apex long-attenuate, acute, smooth. Inflorescence a multiple spike, up to c. 30 mm, or sometimes a single cluster of spikes; bracts to 15 cm, much overtopping inflorescence, erect, flexuous or curved; primary branches 0-4, up to 20 mm, spreading; cluster of spikes by (2-) 4-8, spirally or almost digitately arranged spikes, 10 x 15 mm; spikes spreading, up to 8 x 1.5-2.5 mm, with 6-12 glumes, glume-like bract acute, 2-3 mm, glume-like prophyll c. 2 mm, two-keeled, basal part spongy; rachis c. 0.3 mm wide, 4-angled, internodes c. 0.5 mm; glumes 2.2-3 mm, cymbiform, keeled, mid-nerve-area green, mid-nerve and one nerve on its either side extending into a recurved mucro, up to 0.5 mm, sides reddish or dark reddish brown, with 2-3 additional raised nerves, margin often narrowly scarious. Stamens 3, anthers c. 1 mm. Nut 0.9 x 0.4 mm, obovoid, trigonous, plano-convex, brown, finely papillose.
Fl. Per.: February - April.
Holotype: Pakistan, Karachi, Stead s.n. (B!).
Coastal arid region; Distribution: Endemic to Pakistan and S Iran.
The taxonomic position of C. steadii is in doubt. Kükenthal (1936) placed C. steadii in the sect. Aristati, but the bulbous base seems to suggest rather a relation to sect. Tunicatae of subg. Cyperus.