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Our Shoreland Services

Aitkin SWCD can provide direction and assistance on a host of shoreline management practices. We look for ways to help landowners protect their shoreline.

Shoreland Erosion Control

Eroding shorelines pose a great risk to water quality. Many soils in our area are naturally high in phosphorus – a nutrient that causes lakes and rivers to turn green. Keeping shorelines stabile and in place can keep our waters healthy. There are several tools and options available to property owners that will protect their shoreline. Native vegetation (especially trees and shrubs), willow wattle, coir logs, and even rock rip have been used to protect shorelines.

Technicians from the SWCD are available to discuss options with you and can even meet at your property to discuss options.  In certain situations, financial assistance may even be available to help with design and installation costs of recommended practices. 

Willow Wattles 

Willow Wattles or Brush Bundles are a low cost alternative for stabilizing shorelines.  Cuttings of brush (typically willows) can be tied together into a length and diameter bundle matching the erosion problem. This can be staked along the eroding shoreline. The rough surface buffers the shoreline and gives waves something to break on.

Rock Rip Rap

Rock Rip Rap is only recommended in extreme situations. Whenever it is used a vegetative component is now required, which helps to naturalize the area. Often a buffer strip of native vegetation is planted above the rock.  The rock slope, provides a surface for waves to break against and an angle for ice to travel up without crashing against a vertical bank.

Native Vegetation Buffers

Buffers of Native Vegetation can help to hold the soil in place as well as slow and filter stormwater runoff.  Deep rooted plants, suited to our area are a great choice to add color, texture, and even improve habitat for wildlife. Native plants, including shrubs protect this shoreline on Spirit Lake. Natural mulch helps to suppress any weeds while the desirable plants become established.


Even a small area of native buffer can make a difference for the shoreline and lake water quality.

Coir Logs

Coir Logs are made of shredded coconut fibers. These can be placed along the eroding shoreline and provide protection of the raw bank. If desired, native water loving plants can be placed into the log. These will eventually become established and provide further buffering of the shoreline. 


Shoreland Stormwater Management


Stormwater management on lakeshore property.

Stormwater can wash pollutants into lakes and streams. If stormwater comes too fast, it can also cause soil erosion on lake and stream banks. Examples of pollutants that can be found in stormwater include road salt, car related chemicals, detergents, and soil. It can also include organic materials such as pet waste and lawn clippings/leaves.



Raingardens are a landscaped area designed and shaped to catch runoff. During a rain event, stormwater is diverted into the garden, allowing the water to slowly soak into the ground.

Native flowers and grasses planted within raingardens do a fantastic job of soaking up large amounts of excess stormwater.


Slow the flow of stormwater

You can help lower the impacts of stormwater on your property and help keep our lakes and streams healthy by doing simple things to slow the flow of stormwater.


Rain barrels

Rain barrels are containers that captures roof water from a downspout. This water can be collected and used later to water gardens and lawns.



Native Plantings as Buffers

A strip or area of native plants strategically planted on a stream or lake shoreline is know as a buffer. Buffers protect your shoreline and help filter out potential pollutants.


Animal Waste Management

Picking up your pet’s waste (yes, we mean poop) prevents it from being washed into lake and streams and becoming where it becomes food for algae.


Lake/streambank stabilization

Where shorelines are eroding, work with your local SWCD to learn different methods of restoring your shore. They can help you with local and state regulations, plus give you insights on what works well in our area.

Watershed Management & Wetland Specialist

My name is Veronica Lundquist

I can assist landowners with questions about protecting their shoreline.

Call 218-927-7286

or email

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