Home » Plants » Phragmites australis

Eurasian Common Reed (Phragmites australis (Cav.) Trin. ex Steud.)

Most authorities, for reasons unclear to us, consider this to be a single species with two subspecies occurring in North America, ssp. americanus, which is native, and ssp. australis, which is introduced from Europe. However, these two populations, in spite of having overlapping bloom times and occurring together on some of the same sites, only rarely hybridize in nature, less frequently than numerous other taxa which are treated as separate species. On this basis, and in agreement with Weakley's FSUS, we treat these as separate species. This taxon thus only refers to what some authorities refer to as Phragmites australis ssp. australis; the other we list as American common reed (Phragmites americanus).

Page contents
Eurasian Common Reed
Photo © mefisher, Public Domain.

Range - Expand

Introduced or Not Present

This tentative map is based on our own research. It may have limited data on Canada and/or Mexico, and there is some subjectivity in our assignment of plants as introduced vs. expanded. Read more in this blog post.

This species is usually divided into two subspecies, one native to North America, restricted to the north and west, and rare and scattered in most of its range, and a second, native to Eurasia, which has been introduced and become invasive. Maps of this species can be misleading in that they often mark it as native to much or all of North America.

Photo gallery

Photo © mefisher, Public Domain.