LBJ LAKEWEED TREATMENT PROGRAM

A non-native nuisance aquatic weed called Eurasian watermilfoil has infested many areas of the Highland Lakes, especially Lake LBJ. The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department & the LCRA have created a treatment program that establishes five separate zones, each with three different treatment periods throughout the summer that coordinates the effort to deal with this problem.

Watermilfoil was originally established in Lake Austin in the 50’s to attract ducks and has been misnamed duckweed ever since. It grew well in this new environment and quickly became the dominant plant species. It does provide good cover for fish but grows so fast and spreads so rapidly that it makes fishing, swimming and boating very difficult. We often hear stories of overheated, and sometimes ruined, jet skis and boats due to clogged water intakes and kids that don’t want to fish or swim in the lake anymore because of this plant.

Growing up, we spent lots of time on Lake Austin. Our experience there with watermilfoil makes us believe that it’s in Lake LBJ to stay. Lowering the lake helps temporarily but the plant will come back due to the uncountable number of seeds already in the lake bed and to the fact that any small fragment can establish a new plant. All of the boats that chop it up and folks that cut it and let it drift away are just helping to spread it. The only really effective way to control watermilfoil on Lake LBJ is to treat it with approved herbicides.

We offer a treatment plan that targets watermilfoil along with another unwanted form of aquatic vegetation known as filamentous algae. This plan includes application by our licensed and insured crews of an approved aquatic herbicide, along with an algaecide, that have no use restrictions for swimming, fishing, pet watering and irrigation of established plants. We apply these products by injecting the solution into plant beds in deeper water and by spraying it over them in the shallow water. We are diligent about treating under jet ski lifts, piers, docks and into boat slips. We repeat this process during the second treatment period and also process the required paperwork with the TPWD and LCRA.

In addition to this service, we also offer Lake LBJ property owners a granular product to control algae, which needs to be treated every two weeks in the warm months, along with a beneficial bacteria pellet that helps accelerate decomposition of the organic muck that builds up under docks and in swimming areas. We also partner with a company that offers a monthly service to apply these products and will also remove floating and submerged plants and debris for those who need it.