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Model shorelines are exemplary shorelines that are left in, or restored to, a natural state. Natural shorelines help filter out pollutants like phosphorous, nitrogen, and chloride while preventing erosion and ice heave.

What is a model shoreline?

The best shorelines are left undisturbed and undeveloped or restored to that level of natural state. These shorelines have a variety of upland native plants including grasses, sedges, rushes, forbs, trees and shrubs. If the lake is suitable for aquatic vegetation, as most of the lakes in our watershed are, allowing the aquatic plants to grow is a crucial part of maintaining a model shoreline. Achieving a model shoreline is something all shoreline landowners should strive for.

The District has a ten year goal to promote natural, deep rooted, native vegetation buffers on at least 75% of lakeshore parcels. If you have a shore that lacks native vegetation there are many ways to help restore it to a natural state, while still being able to access the water. Adding plants, trees, and spreading appropriate seed mix along a buffer strip is a great place to start. The District offers financial assistance in the form of mini grants and cost-share assistance, as well as technical planning assistance to landowners looking to restore their shoreline. You can learn more about the District’s native shoreline goals in the 2022-2031 Watershed Management Plan.

Topic Contact

Aidan Read

Land Management Specialist

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