Detroit Lakes Area Residents Are Reminded of DNR Aquatic Plant Management Permit Requirements Related to Control of Flowering Rush

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Flowering rush may be easily confused with beneficial native emergent species, such as hardstem bulrush. Flowering rush has 3-sided stems, grows to about 3 feet in height, and when in flower, has clusters of white and pink flowers with 3 petals.The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) supports well-planned control of flowering rush, which is an invasive species. Nevertheless, lakeshore residents and users must ensure that control of this plant does not cause unintended harm, such as the removal of native bulrush or the further spread of flowering rush from disturbing the plant’s root fragments.

For this reason, the DNR requires that lakeshore owners obtain a permit before removing emergent plants, including flowering rush, by any method proposed. With proper justification, a DNR aquatic plant management permit may be issued to remove the invasive plant in order to provide reasonable use and access for property owners.

Flowering rush was first discovered in the Detroit Lakes area in the 1970s in Deadshot Bay. It has since been documented in Detroit, Sallie, Melissa, and Muskrat lakes, the Pelican River, Mill Pond, and most recently, Buck Lake.

Hand removal may increase the risk of further spread of this invasive plant. Chemical treatment, which limits the potential fragmentation and disruption of the root system of the plant, is currently considered the best option for long-term control of flowering rush.

The Pelican River Watershed District is currently permitted through the DNR to attempt to manage and limit the further spread of the plant through chemical treatment of existing stands of flowering rush around the lake.

For more information on the DNR’s Aquatic Plant Management Program or the aquatic plant permitting process, visit