Scientific name Phragmites australis – Typha latifolia swamp
Common name Common Reed – Bulrush swamp
Community code FW3B


FW3B map: Phragmites australis –Typha latifolia swamp

Download full pdf synopsis: FW3B



This is a somewhat variable swamp community. Phragmites australis is the sole constant species but does not form dense beds. Frequently accompanying the reeds are tall swamp species Bolboschoenus maritimus and Typha latifolia with Schoenoplectus tabernaemontani occasionally present.  In the rather sparse understorey may be found Agrostis stolonifera, Juncus articulatus, Eleocharis palustris, Hippuris vulgaris, Mentha aquatica, Menyanthes trifoliata, Lythrum salicaria, Iris pseudacorus or Hydrocotyle vulgaris.



These stands occur in mildly eutrophic, quite base-rich waters. They have predominantly been recorded from the margins of coastal lagoons, but also from estuaries and from mesotrophic lakes further inland.



Two sub-communities are described. In the Bolboschoenus maritimus – Agrostis stolonifera sub-community (FW3Bi), the titular species are both constants, whereas in the Phragmites australis sub-community (FW3Bii), Bolboschoenus is typically absent and Phragmites remains the only constant.


Similar communities

Bolboschoenus maritimus is also a key species in the SM6A Bolboschoenus maritimus – Agrostis stolonifera saltmarsh-swamp. However, in that community Phragmite australis is rare and Bolboschoenus is often accompanied by at least one halophile, such as Aster tripolium, Triglochin maritimum or Glaux maritima. Dense beds of Phragmites may be referred to the FW3E Phragmites australis – Equisetum fluviatile swamp.


Conservation value

Stands of FW3Bi may occur fringing lagoons corresponding to the priority EU HD Annex I habitat 1150 Lagoons*.



Occasionally, Phragmites beds are cut for reeds, but those in this community may be too sparse for this to be practical. This vegetation may be threatened by eutrophication and drainage.