Lake Cochituate, MA fighting an uphill battle trying to kill pond weeds?
In Massachusetts there is a lake that sit right behind the Natick Mall, it's easily seen off Route 90 and was used as a reservoir for Boston years ago. Lake Cochituate is a beautiful lake in the suburbs of Boston, but over the last decade or so things have changed.
View of hard surfaces around lake
Take a look of this lake from the sky, there is more Grey areas then green - indicating huge amounts of impervious ground. The Natick mall and all the development to the east and south has added to huge run off issues.
The watershed is currently stressed by nonpoint source pollution, primarily urban stormwater runoff from impervious surfaces, decreased groundwater recharge, growing invasive lake weeds infestation, and shoreline erosion from steep slopes, shoreline development, recreational use, and highway crossings. Give this lake no ability to fix itself.
Now after years of discussion the State is allowing the use of approved herbicides for Lake Cochituate to learn how to kill pond weeds the ones that are choking the shallower areas of the lake. The homeowners are worried about the water supply, and what effect the chemical will have on it. They should be worried, but not for just the chemical but for the long term effects on the water.
Herbicides are used in lakes all over the world, but studies are showing that it doesn't solve the problem, and in many cases make a much bigger problem. Algae (Please see earlier posts that describe why chemicals are not the answer to killing pond weeds).
Killing pond weeds isn't the main issue at Lake Cochituate, pond weeds are just a byproduct of the root problem, which is bad watershed management due to overdevelopment. To fix the watershed in that area may not be possible, I think this is a recurring topic that will see the demise of many bodies of water over the next 25 years if not taken seriously.
How to kill pond weeds with the Lake Bottom Blanket
A new and weapon against pond weeds is the Lake Bottom Blanket. The Lake Bottom Blanket kills ponds weeds by asphyxiating the weed by blocking away sunlight without affecting the fish or the water's chemical balance. It is lowered to a few inches from the water bed by tactically placed weights while leaving space for fish to swim below and above the sheet.