Description: This tall, coarse grass grows to 3.5 meters (12 feet) tall and has gray-green leaves about 4 centimeters (1 1/2 inch) wide. It has large masses of brown flower branches in early summer. These rarely produce grain and become fluffy, gray masses late in the season.
Habitat and Distribution: Look for reed in any open, wet area, especially one that has been disturbed through dredging. Reed is found throughout the temperate regions of both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres.
Edible Parts: All parts of the plant are edible raw or cooked in any season. Harvest the stems as they emerge from the soil and boil them. You can also harvest them just before they produce flowers, then dry and beat them into flour. You can also dig up and boil the underground stems, but they are often tough. Seeds are edible raw or boiled, but they are rarely found.
All text and images from the U.S. Army Field Manual 3-05.70: Survival.
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