Vegetation Mapping 2007-2009

Potato Lake

Aquatic Plant Inventory

July 9-17

Collectors: Kelly Condiff, Tony Duquette

Tech Support: Larry Cross, Charlie Parsons

Purpose: The complete cataloging of all aquatic plant species and an invasive species check of areas within defined borders of Potato Lake.

Reason: The creation of a database for the Potato Lake Association for use in lakeshore development and water quality issues.

Tools Used: Arcview 3.3, Garmin 76 GPS, Microsoft Excel and Notepad, Plant Hook, Rake, Lowrance X-75 Sonar.

Methods Used: The inventory was conducted using standard DNR protocol. The lake was laid out in a 50-meter grid point scheme. This gave Potato Lake approximately 4000 possible waypoints for inspection. The grid was further broken down, by separating the lake into 8 individual sections. This allowed for keeping each section waypoints at or near 500.

Findings: The waters of Potato Lake contain 31 species of aquatic plants, none of which are considered invasive. The breakdown of the 31 species are as follows, 7 total emergent species were recorded and 24 species of the submergent or floating leaf varieties were recorded. All four quadrants of Potato Lake have at least small areas of high species diversity still intact. These would be definite areas to be considered for future protection or possible sources of plants for restoration efforts.

Species found and abundances: The following names are of the plant species cataloged during inventory.

Abundance is determined as follows:

Rare- Occurs in less than 25% of sites where vegetation is found.

Occasional- Occurs in 25% to 50% of sites where vegetation is found.

Common- Occurs in 50% to 75% of sites where plants are found.

Abundant- Occurs in 75% or greater of sites where plants are found.

Emergent Species:

Name Latin Abundance
Broadleaf Cattail Typha latifolia Occasional-A
Wild Rice Zinzania aquatica Occasional-A
Horsetail Equisetum sp. Rare-A
Giant Burr Reed Sparganium eurycarpum Occasional-A
Arrowhead Sagittaria sp. Rare-A
Softstem Bulrush Scripus validus Abundant-A
Giant Reed Grass Phragmites australis Rare-W


Submergent/Floating Leaf:

Name Latin Abundance
Mudplan Chara sp. Abundant-A
Coontail Ceratophyllum demersum Common-A
Common Milfoil Myriophyllum sibricum Occasional-A
Water Marigold Megalodonta beckii Rare-A
Mare’s Tail Hippuris vulgaris Occasional-A
Floating Duckweed Lemna sp. Rare-W
Wild Celery Valisernia americana Common-A
Common Water Weed Elodea canadensis Common-A
Bladderwort Utricularia vulgaris Abundant-A
Bushy Pondweed Najas flexilis Common-A


 Name Latin Abundance
Yellow Water Lily Nuphar microphylla Occasional-A
White Water Lily Nymphaea odorata Occasional-A
Longleaf Pondweed Potamogeton nodosus Abundant-A
Richardson’s Pondweed Potamogeton richardsonii Common-A
Whitestem Pondweed Potamogeton praelongus Common-A
Flatstem Pondweed Potamogeton zosteriformis Abundant-A
Straightleaf Pondweed Potamogeton strictifolius Occasional-A
Bigleaf Pondweed Potamogeton amplifolius Rare-W
Illinois Pondweed Potamogeton illinoensis Rare-W
Fries Pondweed Potamogeton friesii Occasional-E,M
Leafy pondweed Potamogeton foliosus Rare-W
Floating leaf Pondweed Potamogeton natans Rare-A
Sago Pondweed Potamogeton pectinatus Occasional -A
Threadleaf Pondweed Potamogeton filiformis Rare-E


Findings: This report finds Potato Lake in good shape overall for plant species diversity. It does however indicate that there is only a small portion of the emergent plant communities remaining. There also appears to be a lack of native shoreline vegetation surrounding the lakeshore. It is imperative that this be remedied to insure future water quality.


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