A variety of different projects and programs are carried out by the Lake Ripley Management District. They include everything from weed harvesting and water quality investigations, to pollution control and the restoration of fish and wildlife habitat. Many of these efforts are funded through grants and carried out with the support of dedicated volunteers.

To learn more about these and other projects, check out the Lake Ripley Management Plan and other reports that can be found on our website. These reports contain a wealth of information on existing resource conditions, problems and emerging threats, ongoing management programs, results of public opinion surveys, and long-term strategy recommendations. Copies of these and other reports are also available for review at the Cambridge Community Library and Lake District office.

Cost-share Projects

Interested in completing a project on your property for the purpose of controlling erosion, protecting water quality or restoring wildlife habitat?  If so, contact us to see if you might be eligible for 50% cost sharing.  Types of projects that may be eligible for funding include:

  • shoreline erosion control and native plantings
  • rain gardens and rain barrels
  • wetland restorations
  • farmland nutrient-management planning
  • conservation farming practices
  • land-protection agreements to protect wetlands and threatened natural areas
  • drainage ditch stabilization or closure
  • tree-drops to enhance fishery habitat
  • tree replacement plantings

For our updated packet giving the 1-2-3 guide to applying for Cost Share, follow this link now.

The Tree Replacement Program

Do you have a diseased tree? Or one that has been damaged by a storm? The District will assist property owners within the Lake Ripley watershed with the replacement of mature trees removed for reasons such as: disease, storm damage, and construction. It is not the intent of the program to replace trees removed to improve the view, for aesthetic reasons, or for harvest.

Find more information on this program here

The Swale Program

Are you interested in turning your stormwater ditch into a haven of native plants? The District is implementing a new program to improve water quality in the lake by improving the absorption of run-off in the stormwater ditches constructed during the rebuilding of Ripley Road.

Find a detailed packet giving the step-by-step process of applying for the Swale Program here.

Native Plant Sale

To order plants for 2024, please fill out the plant order form (link below). Once the form is completely filled out with the plants you would like to order, please send that form to [email protected]. We will respond to your email to let you know that we have received your order. The deadline for orders is Friday, March 29, 2024. Delivery dates will be sometime in May, 2024. The District will reach out to you with more details closer to the delivery date.

Here are some tips and tricks the District has put together to make ordering easier!

For more help deciding which plants would fit your landscape best, visit the Resources link below!

Weed Harvester Program

The District currently owns and operates a 2015 Aquarius Systems’ Model HM-420 mechanical harvester with a 7.0-foot cutting width, 5.5-foot cutting depth, 10.8-19.8” draft, and a 450 cubic feet capacity (10,000 lbs.).

The harvester is constructed upon a low-draft barge controlled by side-mounted paddle wheels, and is equipped with one horizontal and two vertical cutter bars that can be hydraulically positioned. Hydraulic conveyors built into the harvester hoist cut plant debris onto the deck of the barge. When full, the plant material is transported back to shore and off-loaded into a dump truck using a shore-conveyor system.

Ancillary equipment includes an Aquarius SC-23 28.5-foot shore conveyor, a 1992 International dump truck, and a 2015 42-foot Aquarius Systems’ TR-23 harvester trailer with a mounted electric winch. A Lowrance HDS12 Gen 3 GPS system was purchased new in 2018, allowing precise cutting in specific areas. The primary objective of the weed harvesting program is to remove invasive species and to create navigational lanes for lake users.

At the beginning of each season, all equipment is inspected and serviced. At the close of each season, all equipment is cleaned, inspected, lubricated and winterized for storage purposes.

Are you wondering where the weed harvester creates lanes in Lake Ripley? Look no further! Below is a map that shows you where the navigational lanes are cut. Please try to use these community navigational lanes to reduce the amount of prop-chop that ends up on shore. 

Weed Harvester Route Map

Do you have plants in front of your house? Here are some management options for lakeshore property owners!

Looking for more information? Our Weed Harvesting Brochure explains this program in more detail!