Flowering stems. Photo: J C Schou, Denmark

Plants. Photo: Luigi Rignanese, Italy

Seeding plants. Photo: Luigi Rignanese, Italy

Leaves, root, flowerhead, and seeds. Line drawing in Hitchcock, A.S. (rev. A. Chase). 1950. Manual of the grasses of the United States

Common Name

Common Reed, Bamboo Reed, Canegrass




Perennial grass to 6m tall. Leaves mostly alternating up the stems. Leaf with a sheath at the base. Ligule a membrane with a fringe of hairs. Leaves flat, 20-60cm long, 8-45mm wide, hairless, tapering to a fine point. Spikelets green, becoming purplish brown, silvery white to pale brown at maturity, 10-18mm long. Mature seed groups oval to spreading. Seeds hairy, with a long point which looks like a short bristle, 2-11 per spikelet.

Description and photo in G.M. Cunningham, WE Mulham, PL Milthorpe and J H Leigh (1981 and later printings) Plants of Western New South Wales page 132

Differs from Arundo donax in that the plants are reed-like, the outer bract enclosing the flower (lemma) is hairless, and the axis to which the florets are attached is hairy.

PlantNET description:

ausgrass2 description with line drawings and photos: