Common reed

(Phragmites australis)

  • 6 - 15' tall; spreads by rhizomes
  • Forms dense thickets in or near water
  • Blooms July to October
  • Flowers feathery & drooping; can appear silvery or purplish
  • Leaves blue-green, flat, smooth
  • Native species of Phragmites also exist in Colorado


Phragmites Native vs. Exotic Identification Couplet (courtesy of the Western Slope Phragmites Study Group)