One way to keep the lake in great condition is to remove weeds. Left unchecked, these weeds can actually grow to a significant extent and practically cover the shoreline. There are two major ways of removing these aquatic plants: weed harvesting and licensed herbicide application. Keep reading to find out which lake maintenance method would work best for you.

Weed Harvesting

Weed harvesting today involves using specialized equipment to remove rooted aquatic plants. One such piece of equipment used in weed removal is an aquatic weed harvester – an aquatic machine specially designed for inland watercourse management. 

Specialized equipment, such as the aquatic weed harvester, has become necessary for the task of removing aquatic weeds because the amount of vegetative material can weigh many tons and take a lot of time and effort to cut, move, load into trucks or dumpsters, and dispose of. 

There are some harvesters that are designed for different tasks. For example, some harvesters work well for rooted vegetation while some harvesters specialize in removing floating vegetation. 

Advantages of Weed Harvesting

One benefit of removing weeds using a harvester is that it gets the job done in a short amount of time – which makes sense since it is also an energy-intensive task. It is also a method that does not disturb the chemistry of the water. 

Disadvantages of Weed Harvesting

Harvesters are typically limited to the depths where they can operate. Furthermore, the physical activity of weed harvesting can harm animals that may be in the weed bed at the time of harvesting. Weed harvesting is also not a recommended method against weed species that can still propagate from fragments as they remain viable.

Licensed Herbicide Application

If you don’t want to pull weeds out manually, an alternative would be to use herbicides.

Herbicides are chemicals that are used to control the growth of unwanted plants. Just like there are herbicides for weeds in your garden, there are also herbicides for aquatic weeds. 

Only herbicides specifically formulated for aquatic plants can be used in lakes as mandated by the Environmental Protection Agency and state Departments of Agriculture. 

Furthermore, the job is best left to professional applicators. In fact, some states actually require licenses for aquatic herbicide application. 

Advantages of Licensed Herbicide Application

Controlling aquatic weeds with herbicides is significantly less energy-intensive than weed harvesting. Herbicides are also able to control the growth of some algae as well and that can help prevent harmful algal blooms that are detrimental to the lake’s health. 

Disadvantages of Licensed Herbicide Application

Herbicides will help kill aquatic weeds quickly but the dead weeds will still be there and it would take a lot of time for them to decompose. For people who want to remove them right away, they would still need to put in the work and manually harvest the dead plants. 


As you can see, weed harvesting and licensed herbicide application both offer their own set of advantages and disadvantages. If you are unsure about which would work best for your situation, don’t hesitate to call us and we’ll be glad to share our advice.