656B-3-Phragmites-australis-fl-Colleen-Miller.jpg

Phragmites australis

Common Reed

Robust erect perennial with fleshy underground stems, sometimes also rooting from lower nodes. Flowering stems leafy.

Additional information

  • FamilyPoaceae
  • StoreyMiddle storey
  • Size1-3 m high
  • Plant groupingAquatic & Semi aquatic
  • LeavesFlat to inrolled grey-green leaves 20-80 cm x 1-3 cm, tapering to a point, margins rough. Leaf sheath hairy, remaining on stem when leaves fall.
  • Flower colourWhite to purplish
  • Flowering timeNovember to May
  • FlowersFluffy plume-like terminal branched flower spray 10-40 cm long. Spikelets 3-8-flowered, 10-18 mm long, silky hairy.
  • Bird attractingHabitat - nesting and/or safety
  • Butterfly attractingNo
  • Frog habitatYes
  • Growing conditionsSemi-aquatic plant in wet to poorly drained soils, forming colonies on margins of water areas. Moderately salt tolerant. Full sun, semi-shade.
  • Garden useExcellent habitat for water birds and animals but can be invasive if not controlled. Plant on edges of dams and water areas.
  • Commercially availableWholesale only - order in advance
  • Conservation statusWidespread within the Shire
  • Aboriginal Use Food - roots; stems - spears, ornaments; leaves - weaving baskets
Photographer/s: 1, 3, 4 Colleen Miller ©; 2 Marilyn Bull ©

Plant Communities

  • 11 Manna Gum Riparian Forest - Central Highlands (EVC 18)
  • 34 Manna Gum Floodplain Riparian Woodland (EVC 56)
  • 12 Manna Gum Riparian Forest - Dandenongs (EVC 18)
  • 35 Floodplain Wetland Complex (EVC 172)
  • 13 Manna Gum Riparian Forest - Upper Yarra (EVC 18)
  • 40 Snow Gum Grassy Woodland (EVC 175/37)
  • 15 Scented Paperbark Riparian Thicket - Middle & Upper Yarra (EVC 59)
  • 41 Swamp Paperbark Riparian Thicket (EVC 59)
  • 30 Swamp Gum Swampy Riparian Woodland (EVC 83)
  • 43 Buxton Gum Swampy Riparian Woodland (EVC 83)
  • 33 Mountain Swamp Gum Swampy Riparian Woodland (EVC 83)
  • 47 Open Water - Reservoirs, lakes, etc (EVC 718)
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