Case Study: Eradicating Invasive Floating Heart with ProcellaCOR

January 14th, 2020

Before and After

Controlling nuisance weeds and invasive pond plants can be challenging and, in many cases, herbicides are the most effective long-term solution. When properly applied by licensed professionals, EPA-registered herbicides can be invaluable tools for safe, fast and cost-effective aquatic plant management. A community was grateful for a new highly-selective herbicide option called ProcellaCOR after struggling for some time to control the invasive aquatic plant floating heart (Nymphoides cristata) in their Florida waterbody.

This property in Florida is a collection of suburban residential homes surrounding a golf course located at the northern tip of the Everglades. Due to southeast Florida’s tropical climate and year-round growing season, many plants—both native and non-native—become invasive. This requires constant monitoring and management on the land and in the water. Algae and invasive water plants such as vallisneria (tape grass) and hydrilla are commonly managed by recurring herbicide treatments in order to maintain proper water flow and water quality health.

In 2017, lake management experts observed a new species of invasive aquatic plant on the property, Nymphoides cristata—a CATEGORY I on the Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council’s (FLEPPC) 2017 List of Invasive Plant Species. Nymphoides became established in South Florida’s surface waters after being introduced to the region through the exotic plant trade. It has small heart-shaped leaves that float on the water’s surface while the roots grow into the hydro soil. It is presumed that Nymphoides was introduced into this particular property by in-flowing surface water from adjacent drainage canals.

before_web2 after_web2

SOLitude’s team tried several different approaches to manage the floating heart, but did not achieve the desired results. Fortunately, in 2018, ProcellaCOR became available to specifically target the unique growth mechanisms in invasive plants without the need for costly re-application. The product’s premium low dosing features allow for a 100 to 1000x reduction (compared to other aquatic herbicides) in the active ingredient necessary to eradicate the noxious aquatic weeds and invasive pond plants responsible for degrading the health and use of waterbodies. These superior results are paired with a Reduced Risk classification by the EPA, meaning it can be applied to lakes and ponds without impacting the native vegetation or interfering with recreation.

SOLitude began a test study using ProcellaCOR technology in two infested ponds on the property where previous control had not been successful. This alternative solution was an effective choice for this particular property for several reasons: 1) Its unique formulation would target Nymphoides without affecting the other native aquatic plants. 2) Application would only need to be done in the areas where the plant was physically growing, not the entire pond.

The ponds selected on the property for this test study were chosen for their similar size, amount of floating heart present in the water (60 – 70% coverage), and location. Pond A is located farthest away from any surface water canal inflow. Pond B is located closest (40 feet) to the inflow surface water canal from the west. Water from Pond A is used to irrigate residential lawns. Pond B is not used for irrigation.

Efficacy was visible on plants within days of application, and complete control was established after about three weeks in both ponds. Regrowth of Nymphoides was not observed for approximately 8 months in Pond A and 10 months in Pond B. There were no incidents of issues using irrigation water from Pond A. Current treatment methods include use of ProcellaCOR as needed to treat all ponds and lakes on property with 100% control of Nymphoides.

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Contact the experts at 888-480-5253 for all of your lake, stormwater pond, wetland and fisheries management needs. 

SOLitude Lake Management is a nationwide environmental firm committed to providing sustainable solutions that improve water quality, enhance beauty, preserve natural resources and reduce our environmental footprint. SOLitude’s team of aquatic resource management professionals specializes in the development and execution of customized lake, stormwater pond, wetland and fisheries management programs that include water quality testing and restoration, nutrient remediation, algae and aquatic weed control, installation and maintenance of fountains and aeration systems, bathymetry, shoreline erosion restoration, mechanical harvesting and hydro-raking, lake vegetation studies, biological assessments, habitat evaluations, and invasive species management. Services and educational resources are available to clients nationwide, including homeowners associations, multi-family and apartment communities, golf courses, commercial developments, ranches, private landowners, reservoirs, recreational and public lakes, municipalities, drinking water authorities, parks, and state and federal agencies. SOLitude Lake Management is a proud member of the Rentokil Steritech family of companies in North America.

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