Wetland Burns & Maintenance

The Village of Lake Zurich is proactively assessing and planning for the short term and long term needs of our many natural areas.  Natural areas located within Village limits are inspected and evaluated during the fall season.  Village staff in conjunction with a consulting organization specializing in the maintenance and restoration of natural areas formulate a comprehensive plan outlining the following year’s goals. 

Maintenance crews use many techniques to provide an integrated approach to natural area management.  Some of the more common methods are listed below:

Wicking
Wicking is another method used for chemical application.  Instead of spraying the chemical out of a backpack, it is applied using cloth gloves.  Wicking is most often used on reed canary, cattails, and phragmites.  It allows for accurate application of the chemical, while avoiding native sedges, rushes, and grasses that may be growing in with the weedy species.

Controlled Burning
Controlled burning is an effective tool for controlling weedy species and promoting the native plants.  The timing of the burn will determine what weeds are targeted.  Our crew members have many years of experience burning safely, efficiently, and with as little disruption to the residents as possible.

Selective Clearing 
Selective clearing is done to remove invasive woody species such as buckthorn and honeysuckle.  Crew members fully remove the plant and then either chip the material and haul it away or burn the material in brush piles on site.  Once the plant is removed, herbicide is applied to the stump of the plant to prevent it from regrowing.

High Mowing
High mowing is a technique that is used on areas that contain higher densities of weedy species.  A tractor or weed whip is used to mow all vegetation at a height of 8-12 inches.  Mowing at this height will prevent weedy species from producing seed, while opening up the native species to sunlight. 

Spot Herbicide Treatment
Spot herbicide treatment is used to chemically control weedy perennial weedy species.  The main perennial weeds are Canada thistle, red clover, and birds foot trefoil.  Spot treatment with backpacks allows the applicators to specifically target the weeds without damaging the nearby native flowers and grasses.  All applicators are certified by the Department of Agriculture to safely and effectively use the appropriate chemicals for the task. 

For detailed information regarding a specific natural area, or general questions please contact:

Mike Cernock
General Services Superintendent
(847) 540-1696 Ex 8008
Mike.Cernock@LakeZurich.org