Spatial variations in phytoplankton community within a large mesotrophic reservoir (Miyun reservoir, North China) were investigated in relation to variations in physico-chemical properties, nutrient concentrations, temperature and light conditions over a 5 month period in 2009. The dynamics of phytoplankton community was represented by the dominance of cyanobacteria through summer and fall, following with a short term dominance of chlorophyta in late fall, and a relatively high abundance of diatom in October; on the other hand, maximum phytoplankton biomass was recorded in the north shallow region of Miyun reservoir with a higher nutrients level. Particular attention was paid to the impacts of environmental conditions on the growth of two cyanobacteria genera, the toxin-producing Microcystis and the taste & odor-producing Oscillatoria. Microcystis biomass was in general greatly affected by water temperature and mixing depth/local water depth ratio in this reservoir, while the Oscillatoria biomass in the surface and middle layers was greatly affected by total dissolved phosphorus, and that in the bottom layer was related with the Secchi depth/local water depth ratio. Abundant Oscillatoria biomass was observed only in late September when Microcystis biomass decreased and allowed sufficient light go through.