Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 26, Issue 8, pp 7428–7441 | Cite as

Phytoremediation potential and control of Phragmites australis as a green phytomass: an overview

  • Shahabaldin RezaniaEmail author
  • Junboum ParkEmail author
  • Parveen Fatemeh Rupani
  • Negisa Darajeh
  • Xin Xu
  • Rahim Shahrokhishahraki
Review Article


Phragmites australis (common reed) is one of the most extensively distributed emergent plant species in the world. This plant has been used for phytoremediation of different types of wastewater, soil, and sediments since the 1970s. Published research confirms that P. australis is a great accumulator for different types of nutrients and heavy metals than other aquatic plants. Therefore, a comprehensive review is needed to have a better understanding of the suitability of this plant for removal of different types of nutrients and heavy metals. This review investigates the existing literature on the removal of nutrients and heavy metals from wastewater, soil, and sediment using P. australis. In addition, after phytoremediation, P. australis has the potential to be used for additional benefits such as the production of bioenergy and animal feedstock due to its specific characteristics. Determination of adaptive strategies is vital to reduce the invasive growth of P. australis in the environment and its economic effects. Future research is suggested to better understand the plant’s physiology and biochemistry for increasing its pollutant removal efficiency.


Phragmites australis Heavy metals Nutrients Phytoremediation Soil Sediment Value-added products 



The authors also appreciate the help of Dr. Dale Rachmeler (International Development Specialist Oakland, California) for improving the language of the manuscript.


This research is supported by a grant (2016R1D1A1A02937267) provided by the Korean National Research Foundation (KNRF) which is part of project individual basic science and engineering research program (SGER).


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Civil and Environmental EngineeringSeoul National UniversitySeoulRepublic of Korea
  2. 2.Biofuel Institute, School of Environment and Safety EngineeringJiangsu UniversityZhenjiangChina
  3. 3.School of Biological SciencesUniversity of CanterburyChristchurchNew Zealand

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