In contrast to most bamboos, it grows as a dense, climbing or decumbent shrub. Its aerial culms are solid, unlike most bamboos, which have hollow culms. The quila is the only host that has the edible fungus "Changle" (Ramaria spp.) to symbiosis. Chusquea quila may form pure stands called quilantales occupying all the understory of a forest.
Flour can be prepared from its seeds and its shoots are edible.
- "Chusquea quila", Enciclopedia de la Flora Chilena (in Spanish), retrieved July 30, 2013