Arundo donax L.

Giant Reed

Sp. Pl. 1: 81 (1753) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Naturalised

Bamboo-like perennial; culms erect, to 6 m high, usually >1 cm diam toward base. Leaves glabrous; blades mostly 30–80 cm long, 20–80 mm wide, somewhat glaucous; auricles rounded, yellowish; ligule 1–2 mm long. Inflorescences narrowly ovate, 30–70 cm long, contracted to loosely spreading, fluffy; spikelets abundant, 10–15 mm long, 3–5-flowered; glumes subequal or equal, 11–14 mm long, often tinged pink at least when young; lemma 2-lobed, 7–8mm long (excluding lobes), villous; lobes 1–2 mm long, central awn 1–3 mm long; palea about two-thirds as long as lemma, villous. Flowers ?Mar.–Sept.

*GipP, *Gold, *HSF, *OtP, *VRiv, *VVP. Scattered plants occur along watercourses, presumably from water-borne fragments of rhizome. Established colonies are known along the Murray River floodplain and associated lake systems downstream of Swan Hill.

Flowering is rare in Victoria. It is not known if or how often plants are established from seed.

Created by: Neville Walsh, 2015-07-06
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Lilianae
order Poales
family Poaceae
genus Arundo
Higher taxa
species Arundo donax L.


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <>. Find Arundo donax in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Arundo donax in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Victorian Volcanic Plain present naturalised
Victorian Riverina present introduced
Gippsland Plain present naturalised
Otway Plain present naturalised
Goldfields present naturalised
Highlands-Southern Fall present introduced

State distribution

Distribution map
Western Australia
Northern Territory
South Australia
New South Wales
Australian Capital Territory