Posted at: 09/25/2012 6:50 PM
By: Dan Conradt
Trees Used to Help Clean Dobbins Creek
(ABC 6 NEWS) -- It flows through the Hormel Nature Center and forms East Side Lake before it empties into the Cedar River.
It's a process called tree revetment. It's a new way to tackle an old problem"This project is kind of a bank restoration project," explained the ?Conservation Corps of Minnesota's Dave Smith.
"Typically when a stream bank erodes really bad you come back, you replace it with rock," Hanson said.
"Using trees, using what nature gave you is kind of a different way of attacking a problem and fixing it in the same way," explained Hanson."We went south of Rochester to a property and cut some cedars down and hauled them here," Smith said.
"Anchoring those cedar trees into the bank and over time the dirt that's in the water will just settle in around them and eventually the bank will heal itself," said Hanson."It's an evergreen tree, so it's going to hold onto its branches a lot longer and its needles," Smith explained.
A study done a few years ago found that Dobbins Creek consistently violates state standards for water quality."One of the things that came out of that study was stream banks are a heavy contributor to that," Hanson said.
"Strapping them into the bank to help the sediment hit the bank and hopefully over time it will settle, restoring the bank," explained Smith.
"So if we can stabilize the banks then we gain ground on fixing our water quality problem in this stream," Hanson said, "suspended sediment that's in the water is going to filter out and settle out into the trees, and eventually become part of the stream bank itself."
"I think it's definitely a good recycling project," explained Smith.
The project on Dobbins Creek was funded by Minnesota clean water legacy funds.