California Coastal Commission

Right Column

Giant Reed (Arundo donax)

Plant: Tall, erect, rapid growing, perennial, reed-like grass, 6 to 24 feet tall. The jointed stems are ½ to 1½ inches in diameter, hollow and divided by partitions at the nodes. Introduced in California in the early 1800s and was used in the 1820s as roofing material. Reeds for woodwind instruments are still made from the stems. Very invasive.
Flowers: Large, 12 to 24 inches long, plume-like terminal, many-branched, floral collections  
Leaf: Long slender blades tapering to a fine point