Milfoil: 5 Best ways to get rid of invasive milfoil

Milfoilplant
                                                        courtesy of Portland State University


Milfoil is an invasive aggressive plant that can grow quickly and crowd out native plants and mat an entire lake in just 2 years.


It is carried lake to lake by fishing boat trailers and the laws in some states now require that fishermen clean their boats and trailers of all vegetation when they leave a lake.

Water irrigation intake pipes and power plant cooling water intakes are also negatively affected by these thick mats. MIllions are spent each year to control milfoil infestations.

If you already have eurasian milfoil, these are your choices. These methods often also apply to other pond and lake grasses if you have the need to clean out areas for swimming or docking your boat.

PULL IT:

  • Yes, pull the milfoil out by hand, a strand at a time, either standing in shallow water or with your dive suit and tanks...and toss it in the trash.


CUT IT:

  • Purchase a rake that has sharp blades that cut the milfoil off so you can toss it. Rakes specifically designed for cutting milfoil that you can buy are hand pulled or powered, roll, saw, or rototill their way through the milfoil.


COVER IT:

  • Basically deny it sunlight. To do this you cover the milfoil with a blanket. There are companies that sell blankets for this purpose in many sizes.

EAT IT:

  • A few types of carp and water fowl will eat the milfoil, however to introduce carp into a lake that doesn't have them will give you a host of new problems to deal with. The water birds do not eat enough to stop milfoil expansion.


POISON IT:

  • Some states approve the use of a toxic chemical herbicide that targets mifoil. Check with your state agency to learn if you are allowed to use this method.
For the complete list of pests with pictures, and solutions, on this 500 page website, please click the A to Z link.