How, What & Why All your lake weed questions answered

Lake Front Property

Lakes are considered a luxury due to the fact that there is only so many lakes available. Lake front property is in short supply, and over the last century the development of these properties has sky rocketed. Many of the things that had made our lakes so desirable has been lost due to over development and poor watershed management.

Poor watershed management

So, what is happening in our lakes? Watershed issues and hard surfaces have changed how nutrients enter the lakes. Properties that had trees and shrubs lining the lakefront have given way to grass lawns and fresh views. This practice has changed the way run-off from our property is processed. The new backyard is designed for one thing “aesthetics” and doesn’t consider what it can do to the water quality. Grass needs to be fertilized, irrigated, and mowed on a continual basis. The effects of the phosphorous from the fertilizer can be devastating to a lake, overloading nutrient and causing high growth rates of lake weeds.

The importance of a Buffer Zone

Lake: (Def) Noun : A large body of fresh water surrounded by land. Lake weeds are a major problem for millions of water sources and ponds.The development of these lake front properties has removed what is called the Buffer zone. The Buffer zone is an area around a lake that has a dense population of deeply rooted plants, tree, and grasses. Without a buffer of trees, plants and shrubs that absorb much of the nutrients that comes from our property, a high percentage of nutrients end up directly in the lake. This promotes aquatic plant growth and a shift in the water quality.

How did weeds get in my lake?

Over the years we have seen several non-native aquatic weeds sprout up in our lakes, most are from aquariums that are emptied into a storm drain, or from people that have actually planted these weeds off there property to improve the waterfronts appeal. The fact is we live in a pretty global world, so when we do something in say Athens, NY like plant a particular lily from Asia in our little pond we have introduced the entire east coast and maybe the continent to a new “non-native” species of plant. "HOW, it's just my little pond in upstate NY". All water source are open to waterfowl and storm water run off, which are just a couple ways these non native plants spread. Boating can be another high risk area where these weeds are distributed over long distances. A great book on the subject is "Diet for a Small Lake" Prepared by the NYSFOLA.

How do lake weeds harm my lake front?

Every lake needs a balance of plant life to off set the nutrients that are available. The plant life has many forms of Emerging plants that are normally in the shallower depths and provide cover for waterfowl and fish, floating weeds like lilies and duck weed, and subsurface weed that can grow in high depths. When the balance of plant life to nutrients is altered you can have huge changes in the health of your lake.

  • Oxygen depletion – causing fish to die
  • Toxic blooms that have been known to kill animals and a few people.
  • Water usage problems, flow restrictions and stagnant water.

How to control lake weeds?

To control aquatic plants you need to work from the idea that they are needed in some form. Killing lake weeds all to create some kind of swimming pool atmosphere doesn’t work.

What do most people want? An area for them to do what they want when they want to do it. Thanks to the Lake Bottom Blanket each home owner has the opportunity to control the aquatic weeds where they want. LBB’s can be used to clear an area for swimming, fishing or to clear a path to deeper water. It can be installed at any point during the growing season, and you have a instant weed free area.

Most Common Weeds in our Lakes



Eurasian Milfoil if introduced into a body of water can drastically alter its ecology. Milfoil forms very dense mats of vegetation on the surface of the water....

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Hydrilla can reproduce by fragmentation, from seeds, from turions (auxillary buds), and from tubers. Leaves are blade-like about 1/8....

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Fanwort has a small (1/2 to 3/4 inch diameter) white to pink flower which arises from the tip of the stem and stands slightly above the waters surface...

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