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Pest Information

Common Reed

Common Reed

  • Latin Name: Phragmites Australis
  • Common Name: Common Reed
  • Other Names: common reedgrass, giant reed

Pest Details

Common Reed
Common Reed


Native to the South America, but introduced deliberately to the western states as an ornamental plant. Also used for windbreaks, roofing, mats, screens, and even in adobe used for building adobe structures. As an escaped non-native weed it grows readily along the banks of waterways and ponds, interfering with water flow and helping to create stagnant areas.


A perennial grass weed that grows in large, dense clumps. Reproduction primarily is by new growth off of the rhizomes


Mature plants can grow as high as 10feet. New stems grow from rhizomes, and early growth is bright green. Rhizomes are tough, very thick and knotty, and grow vigorously with many branches. Leaves are arranged alternately on the stems, in two very distinct rows on either side. They are very long and may be up to 2 inches wide and 2 feet long. Flower heads are large and plume-like, between 1 and 2 feet long. Each flower cluster, or spikelet, has many long, hairy flowers, giving it a soft appearance.

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