All About Phragmites

Not Just Another Grass

Invasive phragmites is a prolific and aggressive plant that can dominate any moist area in a short time, virtually eliminating other plants in the process. It grows to 16 feet tall and can become so dense that it’s difficult even to walk through. It has been said that ducks can’t even get through untreated stands once they are fully established.

In our original, shorefront survey, done during the winter of 2008-2009, we found over 100 sites where the plants are started.  We caught it early and with the help of grants and private donations, we have been able to control it quite successfully on Lake Charlevoix.

Even with our great success, Phragmites is very difficult to eliminate.  With around 90% of its biomass in the roots, it will keep coming back in many of the more established areas. So, our efforts will be ongoing. Since the summer of 2012 we used volunteers to treat phragmites on Lake Charlevoix. If you have phragmites on your lakefront property, that appears to have been missed, please let us know at


Don’t try to remove it yourself. You can make it worse!

Please become informed and work with LCA to help ensure success! Please read on.

Phragmites! We Can Be Mightier.

Excellent overview article

LCA Phragmites Brochure

Call to Action Letter to shorefront owners

LCA Project Timelines

View Printable Permission Form

Invasive Phragmites Information from Charlevoix County

National Park Service Gov. slide presentation

Educational phragmites video


A particularly prolific stand at the end of Charlevoix Street in Boyne City as it was in 2009
Photo by Mike Schlitt