Wood Small-reed (Calamagrostis epigeious)
Some grasses can be mistaken for reeds because we associate big, fluffy flower heads with the Common Reed, Phragmytes. Phragmytes is actually a grass despite its name and so lovely big flowers like this one are actually grasses.
This particular species of grass, is then, really confusing because, although a grass, it is called a small-reed, that despite the fact it grows quite tall and is not small at all! To add to the confusion, although being the Wood Small-reed it actually prefers rough grassy pasture on heavy soils although I believe it can be found in damp woods. So Its common name is not appropriate at all which makes remembering it that much more difficult.
Despite all this, it is a lovely plant and well worth taking some time to look at and admire.
Find out more about the Wood Small-reed in Dorset here: www.natureofdorset.co.uk/species_panel/Wood%20Small-reed