Plantae > Tracheophyta > Liliopsida > Poales > Poaceae > Phalaris > Phalaris arundinacea

Phalaris arundinacea (reed canarygrass; reed canary grass; Gardenr's-garters; Ribbon grass; Variegated grass)

Synonyms: Arundo colorata; Arundo riparia; Baldingera arundinacea; Baldingera arundinacea f. umbrosa; Baldingera arundinacea var. picta; Baldingera arundinacea var. rotgesii; Baldingera arundinacea var. variegata; Baldingera colorata; Calamagrostis colorata; Calamagrostis variegata; Digraphis americana; Digraphis arundinacea; Digraphis arundinacea var. picta; Endallex arundinacea; Phalaridantha arundinacea; Phalaris americana var. picta; Phalaris arundinacea f. luteopicta; Phalaris arundinacea f. minor; Phalaris arundinacea f. pallens; Phalaris arundinacea f. pallida; Phalaris arundinacea f. picta; Phalaris arundinacea f. ramifera; Phalaris arundinacea f. thyrsoidea; Phalaris arundinacea f. variegata; Phalaris arundinacea subsp. hispanica; Phalaris arundinacea subsp. oehleri; Phalaris arundinacea subsp. picta; Phalaris arundinacea subsp. rotgesii; Phalaris arundinacea subsp. typica; Phalaris arundinacea var. colorata; Phalaris arundinacea var. genuina; Phalaris arundinacea var. glauca; Phalaris arundinacea var. japonica; Phalaris arundinacea var. leioclada; Phalaris arundinacea var. picta; Phalaris arundinacea var. ramosa; Phalaris arundinacea var. rotgesii; Phalaris arundinacea var. thyrsoidea; Phalaris arundinacea var. variegata; Phalaris caesia; Phalaris colorata; Phalaris hispanica; Phalaris japonica; Phalaris monspeliensis; Phalaris picta; Phalaris rotgesii; Phalaris tuberinacea; Phalaroides arundinacea; Phalaroides arundinacea subsp. caesia; Phalaroides arundinacea subsp. japonica; Phalaroides arundinacea subsp. oehleri; Phalaroides arundinacea subsp. rotgesii; Phalaroides arundinacea var. kuzenevae; Phalaroides arundinacea var. picta; Phalaroides caesia; Phalaroides hispanica; Phalaroides japonica; Phalaroides picta; Phalaroides rotgesii; Typhoides arundinacea; Typhoides arundinacea f. colorata; Typhoides arundinacea f. schwarzii; Typhoides arundinacea f. umbrosa; Typhoides arundinacea subsp. rotgesii; Typhoides arundinacea var. japonica

Wikipedia Abstract

Phalaris arundinacea, sometimes known as reed canary grass, is a tall, perennial bunchgrass that commonly forms extensive single-species stands along the margins of lakes and streams and in wet open areas, with a wide distribution in Europe, Asia, northern Africa and North America. Other common names for the plant include gardener's-garters in English, alpiste roseau in French, rohrglanzgras in German, kusa-yoshi in Japanese, caniço-malhado in Portuguese, and hierba cinta and pasto cinto in Spanish.
View Wikipedia Record: Phalaris arundinacea

Invasive Species

Phalaris arundinacea is a cool-season perennial grass that grows successfully in northern latitudes and can be invasive in wet habitats. Since it is tolerant of freezing temperatures and begins to grow very early in the spring, it can outcompete many other species. Any moist, fertile habitat provides good conditions for P. arundinacea. It is considered a serious threat in wet meadows, wetlands, marshes, fens, old fields, floodplains, wet prairies, roadsides and ditchbanks. The invasion is promoted by disturbances, such as ditching of wetlands, stream channels, deforestation of swamp forests, sedimentation, overgrazing and intentional planting. P. arundinacea tolerates frequent and prolonged flooding as well as submergence. It is moderately tolerant of drought and saline or alkaline soils. P. arundinacea spreads within sites by creeping rhizomes and forms dense and impenetrable mats of vegetation. New sites are colonised by seeds. P. arundinacea tolerates a small amount of shade, such as forest edges but not closed forest interiors.
View ISSG Record: Phalaris arundinacea


Height [3]  4.9 feet (1.5 m)
Width [3]  9.8 feet (3 m)
Allergen Potential [1]  High
Screening - Summer [2]  Dense
Screening - Winter [2]  Moderate
Hardiness Zone Minimum [2]  USDA Zone: 3 Low Temperature: -40 F° (-40 C°) → -30 F° (-34.4 C°)
Light Preference [4]  Mostly Sunny
Soil Acidity [4]  Neutral
Soil Fertility [4]  Rich
Soil Moisture [4]  Damp
Water Use [2]  High
Flower Color [2]  Yellow
Foliage Color [2]  Green
Fruit Color [2]  Black
Bloom Period [2]  Late Spring
Drought Tolerance [2]  Low
Fire Tolerance [2]  High
Flower Type [3]  Hermaphrodite
Frost Free Days [2]  4 months
Fruit/Seed Abundance [2]  Medium
Fruit/Seed Begin [2]  Spring
Fruit/Seed End [2]  Summer
Growth Form [2]  Rhizomatous
Growth Period [2]  Spring, Summer, Fall
Growth Rate [2]  Rapid
Hazards [2]  Slight Toxicity
Leaf Type [2]  Deciduous
Lifespan [3]  Perennial
Pollinators [3]  Wind
Propagation [2]  Seed, Sprig
Regrowth Rate [2]  Moderate
Root Depth [2]  14 inches (36 cm)
Seed Spread Rate [2]  Slow
Seed Vigor [2]  Low
Seeds Per [2]  537919 / lb (1185909 / kg)
Shape/Orientation [2]  Erect
Structure [5]  Grass
Usage [3]  Plants have a running root system and form an impenetrable ground cover. They should be mown 2 - 3 times in their first 2 - 3 years in order to encourage thick growth; Plants are best spaced about 60cm apart each way; The leaves have been woven into hats and mats; his is one of the main species used in the reed bed system for the water purification treatment of grey water and for irrigation with pollution control sewage effluent from municipal and industrial sources; One of the highest yielding fodder grasses with annual yields ranging from 8 - 20 tonnes per hectare, it has potential as a source of biomass;
Vegetative Spread Rate [2]  Rapid
View Plants For A Future Record : Phalaris arundinacea


Name Countries Ecozone Biome Species Report Climate Land
Barents Sea Drainages Finland, Norway, Russia, Svalbard Palearctic Polar Freshwaters    
Cantabric Coast - Languedoc France, Spain Palearctic Temperate Coastal Rivers    
Central & Western Europe Austria, Belgium, Byelarus, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Russia, Slovakia, Switzerland, Ukraine, United Kingdom Palearctic Temperate Floodplain River and Wetlands    
Eastern Coastal Australia Australia Australasia Tropical and Subtropical Coastal Rivers    
Eastern Iberia Andorra, France, Spain Palearctic Temperate Coastal Rivers    
Lake Onega - Lake Ladoga Finland, Russia Palearctic Large Lakes    
Laurentian Great Lakes Canada, United States Nearctic Large Lakes    
Northern Baltic Drainages Denmark, Finland, Norway, Russia, Sweden Palearctic Polar Freshwaters    
Norwegian Sea Drainages Norway, Sweden Palearctic Polar Freshwaters    
Southern Baltic Lowlands Belarus, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Russia Palearctic Temperate Floodplain River and Wetlands    
Southern Iberia Portugal, Spain Palearctic Temperate Coastal Rivers    
Upper Danube Austria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Switzerland Palearctic Temperate Floodplain River and Wetlands    
Western Iberia Portugal, Spain Palearctic Temperate Coastal Rivers    

Protected Areas

Name IUCN Category Area acres Location Species Website Climate Land Use
Acadia National Park II 35996 Maine, United States
Aland-Elbe-Niederung 12659 Germany  
Algonquin Provincial Park IV 1868802 Ontario, Canada
Astrakhanskiy Biosphere Reserve Zapovednik Ia 167827 Astrakhan, Russia
Banff National Park II 1690912 Alberta, Canada
Basegi Zapovednik Ia 93739 Perm, Russia
Belovezhskaya Pushcha Biosphere Reserve National Park II 218515 Belarus
Berchtesgaden Alps National Park II 51433 Germany
Bialowieza National Park II 11126 Poland
Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area V 36286 Montana, Wyoming, United States
Bolshekhekhtsirsky Zapovednik Ia 112282 Khabarovsk, Russia
Breckland 18652 England, United Kingdom
Caithness and Sutherland Peatlands 354692 Scotland, United Kingdom
Carmarthen Bay and Estuaries/ Bae Caerfyrddin ac Aberoedd 163340 Wales, United Kingdom
Carpathian Biosphere Reserve 144772 Ukraine  
Catoctin Mountain Park National Park II 5994 Maryland, United States
Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Hist. Park National Historical Park V 19586 Maryland, District of Columbia, United States
Craters of the Moon National Monument V 690996 Idaho, United States
Devils Tower National Monument V 1361 Wyoming, United States
Dorset Heaths 14161 England, United Kingdom
Edwin S. George Reserve 1297 Michigan, United States
Elk Island National Park II 47171 Alberta, Canada
Essex Estuaries 114016 England, United Kingdom
Exmoor Heaths 26455 England, United Kingdom
Flusslandschaft Elbe Biosphere Reserve 925242 Germany  
Forillon National Park II 61010 Quebec, Canada  
Fort Necessity National Battlefield III 1019 Pennsylvania, United States
Fundy National Park II 52716 New Brunswick, Canada
Gettysburg National Military Park V 3560 Pennsylvania, United States
Grand Canyon National Park II 1210128 Arizona, United States
Grasslands National Park II 128635 Saskatchewan, Canada
Great Smoky Mountains National Park II 515454 North Carolina, Tennessee, United States
Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge VI 3161 New Jersey, United States
Gros Morne National Park II 476632 Newfoundland, Canada
Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve II 366714 British Columbia, Canada
Homestead National Monument of America V 850 Nebraska, United States
Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site III 861 Pennsylvania, United States
Humber Estuary 90582 England, United Kingdom
Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore II 8272 Indiana, United States
Isle Royale Biosphere Reserve Ib 571799 Michigan, United States
Isles of Scilly Complex 66350 England, United Kingdom    
Jasper National Park II 2776809 Alberta, Canada
Kejimkujik National Park II 94203 Nova Scotia, Canada
Khopersky Zapovednik Ia 47103 Russia  
Kluane National Park and Reserve National Park Reserve II 5463436 Yukon, Canada
Knife River Indian Villages National Hist. Site National Historic Site III 1756 North Dakota, United States
Kouchibouguac National Park II 59161 New Brunswick, Canada
Kronotskiy Biosphere Reserve 361480 Russia  
Lake Clark National Park and Preserve Ib 386679 Alaska, United States
Lake Superior Provincial Park IV 351011 Ontario, Canada
Laplandskiy Biosphere Reserve 757114 Russia  
Lower Derwent Valley 2263 England, United Kingdom
Luce Bay and Sands 120487 Scotland, United Kingdom
Löcknitztal 1207 Germany  
Magadansky Zapovednik 2332834 Russia  
Migneint–Arenig–Dduallt 49343 Wales, United Kingdom
Moray Firth 373987 Scotland, United Kingdom  
Mount Arrowsmith Biosphere Reserve 293047 British Columbia, Canada  
Nahanni National Park Reserve II 1309627 Northwest Territories, Canada
Niagara Escarpment Biosphere Reserve 470167 Ontario, Canada  
North Norfolk Coast 7926 England, United Kingdom  
North Pennine Moors 254789 England, United Kingdom
North Somerset and Mendip Bats 1387 England, United Kingdom
North York Moors 108930 England, United Kingdom
Okskiy Biosphere Reserve 190748 Russia  
Olympic Biosphere Reserve II 922805 Washington, United States
Pacific Rim National Park Reserve II 137900 British Columbia, Canada
Pembrokeshire Marine/ Sir Benfro Forol 341177 Wales, United Kingdom  
Pen Llyn a`r Sarnau/ Lleyn Peninsula and the Sarnau 360832 Wales, United Kingdom
Point Pelee National Park II 5764 Ontario, Canada
Prince Albert National Park II 976762 Saskatchewan, Canada
Pukaskwa National Park II 459860 Ontario, Canada
Reserva de la Biosfera de Urdaibai Biosphere Reserve V 1777 Spain  
Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve II 762028 Manitoba, Canada
Salisbury Plain 52975 England, United Kingdom
Sayano-Shushenskiy Biosphere Reserve Ia 964620 Krasnoyarsk, Russia
Scotts Bluff National Monument V 3185 Nebraska, United States
Severn Estuary/ Môr Hafren 182155 England/Wales, United Kingdom
Shenandoah National Park II 108221 Virginia, United States
Southern Appalachian Biosphere Reserve 37548505 North Carolina, Tennessee, United States  
Terra Nova National Park IV 125894 Newfoundland, Canada
The Broads 14554 England, United Kingdom  
The New Forest 72309 England, United Kingdom
The Wash and North Norfolk Coast 266284 England, United Kingdom
Tsentral'no-Lesnoy Biosphere Reserve Ia 62630 Russia  
Tsentral'no-Sibirskiy Biosphere Reserve Ia 2521510 Krasnoyarsk, Russia
Ukrainskii Stepnoi Zapovednik Nature Zapovednik Ia 2920 Ukraine  
Upper Miss. River Nat'l Wildlife Refuge National Wildlife Refuge VI 25823 Illinois, Iowa, Wisconsin, United States
Ussuriysky Zapovednik Ia 99910 Primorsky Krai , Russia
Valley Forge National Historical Park VI 3509 Pennsylvania, United States
Verlorenwasserbach 1161 Germany  
Voronezhskiy Biosphere Reserve 95835 Russia  
Vuntut National Park II 1076795 Yukon, Canada
Wast Water 707 England, United Kingdom
Wind Cave National Park II 29471 South Dakota, United States
Wood Buffalo National Park II 11038545 Alberta, Canada
Woodland Caribou Provincial Wilderness Park Provincial Park II 1072124 Ontario, Canada
Yoho National Park II 317576 British Columbia, Canada
Zhuvintas Zapovednik 18223 Lithuania  
Zion National Park II 135667 Utah, United States



Agromyza albipennis[6]
Anser cygnoides (Swan Goose)[7]
Anthomyza collini[8]
Apamea ophiogramma (Double Lobed)[6]
Apamea remissa (Dusky Brocade)[6]
Apamea unanimis (Small Clouded Brindle)[6]
Arthrinium phaeospermum[8]
Baliothrips biformis <Unverified Name>[6]
Brevennia pulveraria (bluegrass mealybug)[9]
Calameuta filiformis <Unverified Name>[6]
Capitophorus archangelskii afghani[6]
Cerodontha denticornis[6]
Cerodontha incisa[6]
Cerodontha lateralis <Unverified Name>[6]
Cerodontha phalaridis[6]
Chlorops brevimana <Unverified Name>[6]
Cosmopterix orichalcea <Unverified Name>[6]
Cygnus columbianus (Tundra Swan)[8]
Delia coarctata[6]
Elachista argentella[6]
Elachista cerusella[6]
Elachista monosemiella <Unverified Name>[6]
Elachista pomerana[6]
Eriopeltis lichtensteini[9]
Euthrix potatoria (Drinker Moth)[6]
Hilberina dactylina[8]
Ischnodemus sabuleti[6]
Javesella pellucida[10]
Lasioptera calamagrostidis[6]
Marasmius curreyi[8]
Marasmius limosus[8]
Mayetiola phalaris[6]
Metopolophium dirhodum (Rose grain aphid)[6]
Mocuellus metrius <Unverified Name>[6]
Morenoina phragmitis[8]
Muellerianella fairmairei[6]
Mythimna pudorina <Unverified Name>[6]
Mythimna straminea <Unverified Name>[6]
Netta rufina (Red-crested Pochard)[7]
Noctua orbona (Lunar Yellow Underwing)[6]
Notaris bimaculatus[6]
Oeneis chryxus (chrysus artic)[8]
Oligia strigilis (Marbled Minor)[6]
Oscinella angularis[6]
Oscinella pusilla[6]
Oscinella trochanterata[6]
Phaeoseptoria phalaridis[8]
Phaeosphaeria fuckelii[8]
Philudoria potatoria <Unverified Name>[6]
Photedes captiuncula[6]
Phytomyza nigra[6]
Psathyrella typhae[8]
Pseudococcus transylvanicus[9]
Pseudonapomyza atra[6]
Psylliodes picina <Unverified Name>[6]
Rhopalomyzus lonicerae[6]
Rhopalosiphum oxyacanthae (apple grain aphid)[6]
Rigidoporus sanguinolentus (Bleeding Porecrust)[8]
Rivula sericealis (Straw Dot Moth)[6]
Sipha glyceriae[6]
Sitodiplosis phalaridis[6]
Stagonospora arenaria[8]
Stenocranus major[10]
Tenthredopsis coquebertii <Unverified Name>[6]
Tetramesa longicornis[6]
Trionymus phalaridis (canarygrass mealybug)[9]


Parasitized by 
Blumeria graminis[8]
Puccinia coronata[8]
Puccinia sessilis (Arum Rust)[8]

Institutions (Zoos, etc.)

Institution Infraspecies / Breed 
Svalbard Global Seed Vault


Bassegi Zapovednik; North America;



Attributes / relations provided by
1Derived from Allergy-Free Gardening OPALS™, Thomas Leo Ogren (2000)
2USDA Plants Database, U. S. Department of Agriculture
3Plants For A Future licensed under a Creative Commons License
4ECOFACT 2a Technical Annex - Ellenberg’s indicator values for British Plants, M O Hill, J O Mountford, D B Roy & R G H Bunce (1999)
5Kattge, J. et al. (2011b) TRY - a global database of plant traits Global Change Biology 17:2905-2935
6Biological Records Centre Database of Insects and their Food Plants
7del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona.
8Jorrit H. Poelen, James D. Simons and Chris J. Mungall. (2014). Global Biotic Interactions: An open infrastructure to share and analyze species-interaction datasets. Ecological Informatics.
9Ben-Dov, Y., Miller, D.R. & Gibson, G.A.P. ScaleNet 4 November 2009
10Ecology of Commanster
Ecoregions provided by World Wide Fund For Nature (WWF). WildFinder: Online database of species distributions, ver. 01.06 WWF WildFINDER
Protected Areas provided by Biological Inventories of the World's Protected Areas in cooperation between the Information Center for the Environment at the University of California, Davis and numerous collaborators.
Ramsar Sites Information Service
GBIF Global Biodiversity Information Facility
Edwin S. George Reserve, University of Michigan, Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
Natura 2000, UK data: © Crown copyright and database right [2010] All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100017955
Images provided by Google Image Search
Abstract provided by DBpedia licensed under a Creative Commons License
Weather provided by NOAA METAR Data Access