Bruce Gilbertson, from the Spicer Department of Natural Resources (DNR) spoke to the KLA meeting on Saturday, June 15, 1996. The focus of his talks was twofold: How to protect the shoreline of Lake Koronis and our attitude about our role in water quality.
He is a proponent of having a buffer zone between our manicured lawns and the lake. Many of us have worked for years to eliminate all the natural vegetation (e.g. weeds) but in doing so have eliminated an area before the lake that could filter out the chemicals we may use on our lawns. A buffer zone would include natural vegetation that would be permanent and unmowed. Gilbertson recommended using mature native types of plantings and that these would provide protection from soil erosion.
Other benefits he identified with having a buffer zone included the more natural beauty of the shoreline, instead of having the shoreline appear as a small city. The shoreline would be stabilized with a buffer zone and it would promote better water quality. Direct benefits to the property owners would be noise abatement, natural screening, and the reduction of yard work.
Lake Koronis' water quality leaves something to be desired. Gilbertson stressed that each of us is responsible for doing our part in positively affecting water quality. We cannot expect others in our watershed district to attempt to "clean up their act" if we as a Lake Koronis community do not present through our actions our desire to protect our lake.
One of the simple things I could do when cutting the lawn at the cabin is to make sure I am not sending grass clippings into the lake. These clippings are nutrient loaded, and the lake cannot deal with them. The other thing I did was to leave a wider strip as I passed near the shoreline bank. Every year I think we are going to clear out the bank of weeds. Now, I'm glad we never got around to it. At least on the majority of our property we have a buffer zone.
For those of you who missed the KLA annual meeting, you missed an excellent speaker in Bruce Gilbertson. He welcomes your questions and can be contacted through the Spicer DNR.
With each of us making simple changes in our practices around the lake, we can make a difference in the water quality of Lake Koronis. I want my great, great-grandchildren to say, "Our ancestors had the foresight to put into practice methods that improved our water quality and ultimately, our view from the lake."
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