Själbottna is characterised by relatively young coniferous forest with stone slabs, while the centre of the island has large fens. Some fenced land is kept open by grazing, and this ensures a rich ground vegetation. Otherwise, it is principally the small islands to the east of Själbottna where the greatest species diversity is found. Själbottna is home to sheltered coves and bays, pleasant bathing rocks and wonderful rambling paths through the forest.
The inner parts of Östra Lagnö are dominated by dense and old spruce forests, alternating with sparse forests with rocky ground and small fens and marshes. Dry ocean coves are found in the southeast with waterside meadows and reeds, while the northeast has dispersed areas of fenced land. Brännholmen offers great opportunities for camping (single tents only), and wonderful bathing. The long shoreline is popular with anglers.
Both Själbottna and Östra Lagnö are pleasant for rambling, and copious berries and mushrooms can be found in the forests. Before care of the nature reserve was introduced on Själbottna and Lagnö, the meadows and arable land had become overgrown. Parts of the old cultivated landscape are now being reclaimed: opened by clearance, and kept open by harvesting and animal husbandry. In this way, the reserve can show that it is characteristic of the natural world in Roslagen, which was previously prevalent here, with its sudden changes between the colour of various types of plant and soil. An added benefit is the richer flora that cultivation in the reserve gives. It must be remembered that our Swedish fields of flowers are the result of human cultivation. Their existence is under threat as society changes, with the rationalisation of agriculture and animal husbandry.