WHAT IS PHRAGMITES (PRONOUNCED FRAG-MITEZ)
Phragmites is an invasive, or a “non-native,” semi-aquatic perennial grass that came to North America in the 1700’s to early 1800’s. It is known as “Common Reed.” It is tall (reaching up to 15 feet) and densely growing. It is found in wetlands, river bank areas, on shorelines, and in roadside ditches.
WHY IS IT A CONCERN?
Phragmites in the Chisago Lakes Area grow fast and can take over shoreland and wetland areas, push out native vegetation, reduce habitat quality for wildlife, obstruct lake views and block water access. North and South Center Lakes, and Chisago and South Lindstrom Lakes are highly infested with phragmites.
HOW IS IT CURRENTLY CONTROLLED?
Local lake associations are working with the MN Aquatic Invasive Species Research Center (MAISRC), the Chisago Lakes Lake Improvement District and Chisago Soil & Water Conservation District to identify and map occurrences of phragmites and determine long- term ways to treat infestations along shorelines, and in wetland and upland areas in the Chisago Lakes area. Center Lakes Association and Chisago-Lindstrom Lakes Association are actively working with lakeshore owners to cut stands of phragmites on shorelines and treat with an approved herbicide.
WHAT IF I HAVE PHRAGMITES ON MY SHORELINE?
Contact your local lake association and a representative will visit your lakeshore property, map the location and take a sample to send to MAISRC to confirm if it is native or invasive phragmites. If found to be invasive, the lake association will contact you on how to best treat the phragmites.
Visit www.maisrc.umn.edu/phragmites-map to see if your property has been identified as infested.