by Tim Groshens
Here are some thoughts gleaned from several other engaged Diamond Lakers:
•It took decades of misuse of the lake and surrounding land to get us to where we are. It has only been about the last four decades that we have tried to stop further harm and clean up. It will be a slow process. Think of cutting open a pillow and scattering the feathers on a windy day. It will take you a lot longer to clean those feathers up then is did to spread them. But we need to commit ourselves to doing that. •Generally, weeds and algae are two separate problems with separate solutions. They intersect where weeds decompose creating more phosphorus which causes algae. But eliminating weeds will not stop algae and eliminating algae will not stop weeds. •Invasive species are the result of travel. We are not going to stop that. We now have curly pond leaf and zebra mussels. Last year we had a scare that Eurasian Milfoil may have entered the lake. Use best practices. Inform yourself of the types of weeds you find in the lake. •Sometimes the complaints are about native vegetation. There are areas on the north and east side that are covered by reeds. Some lakeshore owners find this to be a problem. But keep in mind, the reeds offer shelter to the smaller fish and filter out a lot of the pollutants. The DNR allows some very limited options for landowners to remove these native weeds, but it is very important to follow those DNR rules. Also, if you do cut your reeds or other weeds make certain you clean up. Your neighbors do not appreciate being on the receiving end of your weeds. •Algae is the result of excess phosphorus in the lake. Studies show that somewhere between 70 and 80 percent of the phosphorus comes into the lake on the East side through a chain of smaller lakes. About three years ago, there was a multimillion dollar project designed to eliminate (or at least substantially reduce the phosphorus entering the lake. That project has not shown the anticipated results, but we continue to monitor it in the hopes that the phosphorus can be reduced. •If we can reduce the amount of phosphorus entering the lake there may be a way to treat the phosphorus by treating it with alum which can lock the phosphorus into a molecule that prevents it from creating algae. This is an expensive treatment and one which can only work in certain conditions. This is an option in the exploration stage. •In the meantime one of the actions lake residents can take is to use restraint when in shallow waters. Boats and jets skis can easily turn up the phosphorus when operating in the shallows. Take you time and enjoy the trip to deeper waters. •Farmers are often pointed to as the cause of the problem. So far as I know, farmers have not been planting weeds in the lake but runoff from farming results in phosphorus and nitrogen that ends up in the lake. But farming practice have changed dramatically. Twenty years ago, there were at least five places around the lake where cows regularly wandered in the lake. Instead of swimming with dolphins, you could swim with the cows. Farmers in the area have been very cooperative in working with us, the DNR, Watershed District and the county in making improvements. I encourage all of you to talk with local farmers. They are with us in trying to improve water quality. They cannot discontinue farming, but they are more than willing to change the way they farm. •I have been told the weather makes a difference in the amount of algae and weeds that appear each year. In a dry year I have been told that we will have increased algae and weeds because there is little movement of the water. In wet years I have been told we will have increased algae and weeds because the rain increases the runoff and will bring more nutrients into the lake which will increase the growth of algae and weeds. Sometimes it is just like that.
Enjoy what remains of the summer and get prepared for the winter which brings entirely different ways to enjoy the lake!
Below are three companies that will work on the homeowners grinder stations. W.W. Goetsch (a leading supplier for pumps and controls for municipal, commercial, fire protection and industrial applications”) provided training for them. All have parts on hand. However, they do not pump out the stations. That would be any septage hauler.
Dan @ D&D Electric (320) 894-2900
Joel @ Lakeview Electric (320) 905-6053
Jessie @ 3W Electric (320) 220-0146
Any questions or emergency please email GLSWD@kcmn.us
Muddy Paw Ceramics/Heather Meyer will be having its Labor Day Weekend Showing at the home of Kathy Meyer, 6462 159th Street NE, Atwater...just off county road 137 on east side of Diamond Lake. Labor Day weekend: Friday evening, 4-7 and Saturday & Sunday, 8-5. All work is hand thrown. This is a repeat from July 4th
Celebrate Life, Celebrate Music
Mark & Kathy Haen will be hosting their Music Fest on Saturday, Sept. 10 from ~2:00-Sundown outside his wonderful house at 14991 49th Ave,NE (southeast side of the lake). Bring a lawn chair but do not bring a dish to pass around. Chef Jeff will be doing his smoked brisket at 5:00 and Tearese Haen will have her homemade, legacy German baked beans. A free will offering will be taken.
Two big birds and about a dozen chicks are nesting somewhere near my property. They enjoy rooting on my pontoon trailer and neighbors report sometimes seeing them twice a day on their property. Anybody want to take the big ones out before Turkey Day? Maybe you have to use a bow and arrow? I get half the proceeds.
DLARA Board member Jeff Gertgen reports that there are 2 very good week rakes on the market, Rakezilla @ $199 and Beach Buddy at $399. They are easily found on the web. Neighbors might want to go in on one together. My wife actually likes raking it in, so to speak. But check out the regulations at the DNR website before doing anything.