Lake Rebecca Buckthorn Removal Project
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, St. Paul District, has begun an effort that will aim to create a high-quality wildlife habitat within the forest area of Lake Rebecca Park over the next several years. Through sustainable forest management practices, the Corps of Engineers will work to diversify tree species, rid the forest of invasive plants such as purple loosestrife and non-native common buckthorn, and replace invasive species with native forbs and shrubs.
Two acres within the forest stand will be used as a research plot by the University of Minnesota to test alternative approaches for controlling buckthorn re-establishment. Initial work to control invasive species (common buckthorn, bush honeysuckles, Japanese barberry, and oriental bittersweet) will include mechanical and/or chemical controls, and will apply to the entire forest area. Follow-up treatments by the Corps will not include the University’s research area.
Hastings residents and visitors frequenting the trails in and around Lake Rebecca Park, Jaycee Park, and the Lock and Dam #2 areas may observe trucks, large and small equipment, Corps of Engineers, and University of Minnesota staff and contractors entering and exiting the Lake Rebecca forest area over the next several years.
Lake Rebecca Park is located immediately south of the Lock and Dam #2 in the City of Hastings. It is managed under a recreational lease to the City. The affected project area includes 133 acres of forest.
February Update from Army Corps of Engineers:
Approximately 140 trees were planted in the forest area in early November (see lime green circles on map).
Buckthorn removal will begin on February 7, 2018. Working areas are flagged with pink and orange flagging tape. This work will be completed by the end of February. Expect to see equipment such as a bobcat with a forestry mulcher attachment.