DL found a fix for flowering rush problem, and other towns are taking notice

Trying to remove flowering rush from lakes and waterways was a frustrating "Mission: Impossible" for four decades in Detroit Lakes, with one attempt after another failing to work.

Flowering rush's pretty looks are deceiving. The invasive plant poses a serious threat to Minnesota's waters. (Tribune File Photo)

Flowering rush's pretty looks are deceiving. The invasive plant poses a serious threat to Minnesota's waters. (Tribune File Photo)

A southward view of Lake Sallie, where the Pelican River flows in, shows a flowering rush infestation, pre-treatment in August 2017. (Photo courtesy of the Pelican River Watershed District)

A southward view of Lake Sallie, where the Pelican River flows in, shows a flowering rush infestation, pre-treatment in August 2017. (Photo courtesy of the Pelican River Watershed District)

That same view of Lake Sallie, post-treatment in July 2018, shows a drastic reduction in the sprawl and density of the flowering rush. (Photo courtesy of the Pelican River Watershed District)

That same view of Lake Sallie, post-treatment in July 2018, shows a drastic reduction in the sprawl and density of the flowering rush. (Photo courtesy of the Pelican River Watershed District)

Now, the infamous invasive plant is finally getting under control.

Authorities with the Pelican River Watershed District are calling it "a big success story": a multi-year, multi-partner research project on flowering rush yielded some real results, leading to the development of a groundbreaking chemical treatment strategy — and it's working.

Almost 100 acres of flowering rush have been wiped out from local lakes since the first test treatments began in 2013, and once-dense plant populations that made waters impassable have been thinned enough that boats can now get through without trouble.

The pretty-yet-widely-despised plant is far from eradicated — and never will be entirely — but broad swaths of it that once crippled shoreline activity around parts of Big and Little Detroit Lakes as well as Curfman, Sallie and Melissa lakes, have all but disappeared. Shoreland areas once stagnated by thick growth both above and below the water are now enlivened with boaters and swimmers again.

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources describes flowering rush as a recreational, economic and ecological threat. The invasive perennial overtakes habitat and outcompetes native aquatic plants, and deprives fish and animals of shelter, food and nesting habitat. 

For full article, go to: DLOnline

Source, image(s), credits & more: DLOnline | Marie Johnson