the vibe of common reed

So, yesterday I went out for a bicycle ride and finally I found what I've been looking for.

Hidden in a wet wasteland at the far end of an abandoned asphalt road (yes, it was being invaded by weeds growing even into asphalt), there it was! A gorgeous stand of phragmites australis AKA the common reed:

To be perfectly honest, at the beginning i doubted it was even phragmites: wounding the stems didn't produce any sugary sap. The stem itself was rather fibrous..
Exactly not the vibe I was expecting to feel, I even thought that could have been some phalaris spp. (totally useless to me) but then a quick check over google confirmed the contact. I dismissed my disappointment and thought those plants were already on an advanced phase of the season :\
I tried pulling one out but the stem broke at the base... hmm probably the rhizome was just beneath but I didn't have time nor equipment to dig and investigate.

Then let's talk about the panicles. They look right what they should look, but on a close examination they were still flowering. Hmm it seems I'll have to wait at least 1-2 months before I can harvest any seeds. Weird..

On a side note, there were quite a few plants growing (and doing acceptably well) on normal moist land: that is unexpected.. If I get it correctly the rhizomes were actually running into the water bodies as I read they could be up to 6-10m long.

Hmm I'm not dismissing phragmites australis, on the PFAF database it has an edibility rating of 5 which is unusual. Therefore I need to evaluate it at other stages of growth.

Now then, on moist land I would grow it for the seeds and because it has a tendency to stabilize and  increase soil depth, but I should be really growing it on wet soil for its rhizomes and delicious sprouts. 
The biomass it produces is pretty high with figures around 40-60 tons/hectare (dry weight? O_O) and it should have a usable sugar content in the stem and roots.
Time will tell.

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