Common Reed

Latin Name:

Phragmites australis

Manx Name:



August - October

Locations where this species is found:

These large reeds can be found in many places on the island, but extensive 'reed beds' can only be found in a few areas.

The common reed is a surprisingly useful plant. As well as being an important habitat for birds, its roots and young shoots can be eaten raw or cooked, its stems can be boiled into a syrup, its sap can be made into sweets, young stems can be dried, powdered and roasted, and many other uses.

These reeds have also been used to make thatched roofs, baskets, pens, paper, arrows and many other useful things.

Common Reed is Britain's tallest grass, and can grow up to 3 meters tall. This helps to distinguish it from similar-looking species that do not grow as tall.

The Manx name for this plant is "Cuirtlagh", which means "reed" or "cane".
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