Common Reed

Description

Common names

Common Reed, Cane, Cane Grass, Commom Reed, Ditch Reed, Giant Reed, Giant Reedgrass, Phragmites, Reed Grass, Roseau, Roseau Cane, Yellow Cane.

Scientific names

Phragmites australis, Phragmites communis.

Family

Poaceae.

Genus

Phragmites.

Growth rate

Fast.

Growth height

Up to 4m.

Presence in Australia

Widespread and common throughout region.

This specie has been identified in the following Australian states: Qld, NSW, ACT, Vic, Tas, SA, NT, WA.

Habitat

Permanently or seasonally inundated areas with high watertable, including marshes and lagoons, and along creek and river banks. Prefers fresh or slightly brackish water up to 2m deep, mainly on mud substrate but occasionally on sand.

Habit

Semi-aquatic, bamboo-like perennial grass with strongly creeping rhizomes (underground stems) up to 4m high.

Characteristics

Fast-growing.

Seed collection

Late autumn to mid winter.

Propagation

By division in spring or from seed using the Bog method. Stand seed tray in container of water to keep moist. Can also be propagated by layering, stem cuttings in spring and rhizome cuttings.

Land protection

Excellent for streambank erosion control, protecting beds and banks from erosive flows. A good siltation filter and sediment trap.

Wildlife

Excellent wildlife habitat, as cover for small birds and waterbirds such as the Australian Reed-Warbler, and important fish refuge, providing an aquatic food source.

Ornamental

Attractive waterside plant for large garden ponds. Cut back in winter to rejuvenate.