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We have the right to swim fish water ski and boat in most of the lakes in Minnesota We have heard for years that in order to keep our lakes beautiful we must all take responsibility in keeping them clean We know not to put garbage in the lakes but how many of us know about the garbage we should not take out of the lakes Eurasian watermilfoil is a particularly problematic exotic aquatic weed in North America due to its ability to reproduce from fragments and spread rapidly It also has a high growth rate in a range of temperatures and environmental conditions Its tendency to reach the surface and form extensive mats of plant at the surface can allow it to shade and out compete native vegetation Eurasian watermilfoil Myriophyllum spicatum is recognized primarily by its whorls of four feather-like leaves around the stems Each leaf is finely divided into paired leaflets typically 12 to 21 pairs per leaf The number of stems per plant increases as the plant ages Each individual stem branches several times as it nears the water surface Dense Eurasian watermilfoil beds usually occur in water between 3 and 12 feet deep although specimens have been found in up to 30 feet of water The tops of the milfoil plants both stems and leaves often turn red in color The species is perennial initiating new growth from over wintering root material each spring Milfoil is believed to spread from one body of water to another primarily by the introduction of plant fragments Fragmentation is the principal means of reproduction in this species A milfoil fragment only a few inches long can form roots and grow into a new plant Milfoil fragments are most abundant during mid-to-late summer but can be transported from a lake year round The second traditional method of reproduction is through asexual reproduction The mother plant forms underground runners that develop into other plants These
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