Lake Superior Shoreline Vegetation Demonstration Projects for Erosion Control and Bluff Stability
Minnesota Board of Water and Soil Resources and Lake Superior Association of Soil and Water Conservation Districts
Basin Program Funds:
Revegetation of the region directly landward of shoreline erosion control projects
is required in order to sustain their long-term success. In order to choose
the most appropriate woody or other deep rooted vegetation, specific guidelines
for selecting Lake Superior facing slope and frontage specific species is required.
Final revegetation of several Lake Superior projects has not been completed
to date because specific guidelines for species selection have not yet been
devised. Issues to be addressed include height, whether species are native or
exotic, erosion control capability and potential slope stability, plant acquisition
and care. The development of a shoreline vegetation fact sheet will help disperse
Four typical Lake Superior vegetation sites were selected, planting plans devised
and demonstration planting carried out. The four sites included a flat splash
zone directly landward of an existing rip-rap revetment; a steep rock and clay
shoreline; a tall slumping clay bank with toe protected by a rock buttress;
and a sandy beach back shore area. Detailed planting plans for each site were
prepared for spring 1998 planting. Approximately 1,400 trees, plants and shrubs
were planted in addition to ground cover and erosion control matting. Investigators
also created a fact sheet to guide property owners in the future.
A total of 880 tons of soil were saved annually. Because the planting formed
the final aspect of each site's erosion control program, task specific amounts
cannot be calculated for them, nevertheless each planting forms an integral
aspect of the final soil saving calculation. It is expected that successful
vegetation will result in improved fish habitat and ambient water quality.
The fact sheet, Erosion Control Vegetation for the Lake Superior Shoreline,
was printed and made available for distribution to interested property owners.
Contact: Gene R. Clark, (218) 723-4752