Shoreline Preservation and Restoration

shoreline with duck


Shoreline Tips From:


fortin consulting

Homeowner Tips for Lake Protection

Lakeshore Buffers

  • Leave a buffer of native trees, shrubs, grasses, sedges and wildflowers between your lawn and the lake
  • Stabilize any areas that are eroding soil into the lake
  • Don’t remove ice ridges that form along the shoreline
  • Minimize addition of sand for beaches
  • Don’t try to create a sandy beach where one never existed

Exotic/Invasive Species

  • Learn how to identify and control exotic species
  • Always remove plants and mussels from boat, motor, trailer and anchors and drain live wells before leaving boat landing.
  • Never dump bait buckets or live fish from one water body into another

Runoff Reduction

  • Reduce the amount of water that runs off of your property into lakes
  • Direct roof downspouts onto vegetated surfaces rather than paved surfaces
  • Use pavers or permeable surfaces rather than solid concrete or asphalt surfaces
  • Drain sump pump onto vegetation rather than paved surfaces

Yard Care

  • Don’t fertilize right up to the shoreline
  • Use phosphorus-free fertilizers unless a soil test reveals the need for phosphorus
  • Clean up any fertilizer that spills onto the driveway or street
  • Sweep grass clippings back into the yard if they end up on a paved surface
  • Don’t blow grass clippings into the lake as you mow
  • Rake up leaves from the street before they are washed into the stormsewers or lake
  • Use pesticides sparingly.  Consider non-toxic alternatives such as hand pulling weeds.

Home and Recreational Activities

  • Wash the car in the yard or at a commercial car wash rather than in the driveway
  • Use non-lead sinkers and lures. Lead is harmful to loons and waterfowl
  • Adjust boat speed to reduce wake and minimize damage to shores
  • When purchasing a boat motor, choose 4-cycle over 2-cycle engines

Septic System Care

 Have your septic tank pumped regularly (usually every year or two)

  • Don’t dump toxic cleaners or products down your sink- they will kill the bacteria that treat the waste
  • Don’t use septic system additives
  • Use water conservation practices
  • Don’t use a garbage disposal if you have a septic system


Resources for Shoreline Restoration

Score Your Shore

Score Your Shore provides an objective and systematic method to assess the type, quantity and quality of the existing shoreland habitat and stewardship.

Restore Your Shore
Instructional on-line program for restoring and protecting native shorelines.  Includes sortable plant list.

Lakescaping for Wildlife & Water Quality
by Carol Henderson, Carolyn Dindorf and Fred Rozumalski
DNR Instructional publication on shoreline restoration.

Available at many local booksellers,, and through Minnesota’s Bookstore.

Local Native Plant Nursery

Sunshine Gardens Nursery & Landscaping, Inc.
1286 Shadywood Shores Drive NW
Pine River, MN 56474

LOCATION: Take Hwy #84 -12 miles North of Pine River, right on Hand Lake Road (County Road #49) & follow signs.

Morning Sky Greenery
44804 State highway 28
Morris, MN 56267

Location: Located on highway 28, two miles East of Morris and six miles West of Cyrus.

Landscape Plan Software

Garden Planner


DNR Permit required for planting below the OHW
NORTHWEST – REGION 1 – Bemidji (plus Lake Osakis)

Department of Natural Resources

Regional Fisheries Manager

2115 Birchmont Beach Road NE

Bemidji, MN 56601

(218) 308-2623


Cass County Environmental Services/SWCD
      Kelly Condiff      218- 547-7246

Assistance with shoreline restoration, possible cost-share funds

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