One of the best parts of camp is running around outside. Kids run, jump and play in the great outdoors. That’s the way it should be, but all that foot traffic takes a toll on the grounds.
We do our best to care for the grounds in an environmentally responsible manner. With thousands of square feet of open field, that means we don’t use harsh chemical herbicides. You may love a lush, green lawn at home that’s weed-free, but we tolerate the dandelions knowing that any chemical weed control can very quickly run-off into Big Trout Lake, causing all kinds of harm to the aquatic ecosystem. We limit herbicides to certain designated ball fields where there’s little chance of run-off.
We also use native plants whenever possible and design our landscaping to limit the need for herbicides. That includes over 20,000 feet of paths and four miles of roads and ditches.
We are currently restoring an area about the size of three basketball courts where a number of Aspen trees were removed (per our forestry management plan from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources). The heavy equipment used in the removal compacted the soil, which makes it hard for new plants to grow. A group of volunteers planted shrubs, low lying plants and grasses that will help accelerate the breakup of the hard soil and attract hummingbirds and butterflies. Restoring the soil will allow new trees to grow faster.