Note: This article is from the Prior Lake American was originally posted on May 25, 2016.
Eighty-three volunteers put on their boots and pulled up their sleeves to help restore more than 1,000 feet of shoreline on the north side of Spring Lake on May 21.
“This event aimed to give lakeshore property owners hands-on experience and the tools they need to restore their own shorelines.” said Maggie Karschnia, water resources project manager for the watershed district.
The work included hauling 140 cubic yards of buckthorn, an invasive species, up the steep slopes and out of the shoreline restoration area. Volunteers then got out hand shovels and planted more than 1,000 native plants. They also installed erosion-preventing projects such as brush bundles and cedar revetments, which will promote a natural plant barrier to protect the shoreline and prevent phosphorus runoff.
The restoration was completed at two sites: a small quarter-acre parcel owned by the watershed district, and the southern shoreline boundary at Spring Lake Regional Park.
Spring Lake borders the south edge of the 400-acre Spring Lake Regional Park, home of a rare maple basswood forest, recreational amenities and open water and wetlands. Great River Greening volunteers have played a key role in its evolution. Since 2010, 400 volunteers have hauled buckthorn and planted native flowers to restore the park’s oak savanna. The shoreline restoration on the watershed district property will help to enhance the work completed at the regional park and provide vital habitat connections for wildlife.
The project is made possible with support from Scott County, the Prior Lake-Spring Lake Watershed District, the state DNR Aquatic Habitat Program, the Minnesota Outdoor Heritage Fund, Cargill and Scott County in partnership with Three Rivers Park District.