Blue-Green Algae Advisory – Kathy Lake 8/15

The HVL Natural Resources Department collected and tested water samples from Kathy Lake on August 14, 2019. One of those samples tested positive for a high level of a microcystin toxin associated with cyanobacterial (blue-green algae) blooms. Do not swim in or drink water from that lake. Do not let your dogs swim in or … Read more

Clean Water and MS4 Regulations

Regardless of your political position on EPA clean water regulations, we should all agree that keeping our lake free of sediment, chemicals, and excessive algae growth is a goal that we can all support. This is important for the health of our swimmers and boaters, good for the environment and our property values, and key … Read more

Proper Fall Yard Maintenance

Consider leaving part of your yard messy this winter! Yes, ignore any lingering  tendencies that you have to pick up every leaf or plow under spent flowers during your fall cleaning frenzy. While we used to promote major cleanup efforts to reduce the impact of fungal diseases that can linger in overwintered debris, we now … Read more

Proper Disposal of Yard Waste

Just a reminder that the HVL bylaws prohibit the deposit of natural debris (yard waste) on private property and in green spaces. As you are doing your winter prep this year, please bag up leaf debris (preferably in biodegradable bags) and leave it for your regular weekly garbage collection. Brush and tree debris can be … Read more

Proper Disposal of Hazardous Household Waste

Good news! The Dearborn County Recycling Center on Prospect Lane in Aurora has expanded weekly collection hours of hazardous household waste (HHW). You may drop off labeled unwanted (and unknown) chemical products from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Monday thru Friday, with extended Wednesday hours to 6 p.m. HHW includes any unusable product that can … Read more

Meet the Asian Longhorn Beetle

If you thought the Emerald Ash Borer was bad…… The Indiana DNR has reissued a watch for the Asian Longhorn Beetle (ALB), a 1 ½ inch long beetle that looks like it escaped from a science fiction movie. Sporting random white spots on its black body and antennae, this invasive threat previously quarantined in areas … Read more

Emergency Preparedness Exercise Tests Hazmat Response Plans

Residents near the HVL pool experienced blocked roads and the alarming presence of fire trucks, ambulances, and hazmat vehicles on the morning of Saturday, July 22. All the activity was part of a coordinated full-scale exercise (FSE) that simulated an accident involving a chlorine tanker truck. Over 70 professionals from 14 organizations in SE Indiana … Read more

Water Quality & YOU

It has been a while since I have challenged your knowledge of water quality issues, so see how well you do on this short quiz. The biggest threat to water quality in HVL is? Wild animals defecating in the water Oil and gas spills from boats Sedimentation Fertilizer Runoff Trash blocking water channels If you … Read more

How Storm Water Impacts Our Lakes

What you can do to help Many of us experienced leaky roofs and water in our basements during all of those big May storms, but did you know that those storms also had a major impact on our lakes? Woody debris from dead trees and private dumping in ravines clogged several of the outflows from … Read more

Bamboo – Just Don’t Plant It!

Recently, I have investigated two complaints from residents who are concerned that bamboo planted by a neighbor is spreading into their yard or HVL greenspaces. Unfortunately, there is no HVL rule prohibiting the planting of bamboo, but as your Natural Resources Coordinator, I strongly discourage it. Much of the bamboo sold at local nurseries and … Read more

What To Do With Hazardous Household Waste

Special collection event for hazardous waste — Wednesday, May 31, 9:00 a.m. – 6 p.m. You sorted out all of the stuff in your garage to find treasures for the rummage sale, so now what do you do with all the old electronics and half-used cans that no one snatched up? What you should NOT … Read more

Ash Trees: EAB Update

Is it Too Late to Save Your Ash Trees? By now you have probably heard of the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) and the devastation this tiny pest can cause to ash trees. Few things in life are guaranteed, but 100% of untreated ash trees WILL die! Dead ash trees become brittle and are dangerous when left … Read more

Don’t “P” in the Lake

Keep Our Lakes Healthy It looks like we may have another hot summer that increases the possibility of an algae bloom on our lake. Such blooms are natural, but can be accelerated if there is an excess amount of phosphate in the water. This can occur in spring when the surface water temperatures warm bringing … Read more

Why warm winters are bad for the environment

Whether or not you agree with the interpretation of worldwide weather data that indicates a climatic warming trend, you have probably seen something locally that indicates that things are changing. For me, that change is the earlier bloom times in buckeye trees over the 28 years that I have lived in HVL. Why have I … Read more

Keeping Hidden Valley Lake Clean

How regulations help keep our lake clean and chemical free – We are lucky that there are no sewage plants, agricultural lots, or industries discharging pollutants upstream of our lake. If fact, most sources of point water pollution in the United States have been eliminated through the efforts of (and regulations initiated by) the Environmental … Read more

Don’t Dump Yard Waste

Reminder – do not dump yard waste in HVL green spaces or lakes! When I was at the marina the other day waiting for the swans to pose for a picture, I noticed a bundle of cut branches floating around the docks. It was easy to identify as American Beautyberry by the small purple berries. … Read more

Why is the bark falling off your ash trees?

The next phase of the Emerald Ash Borer infestation – One of my neighbors recently asked me what was causing the bark to fall off of his ash trees even though it did not have dead limbs at the top. I have to admit to some initial uncertainty about the cause. After all, by now … Read more


Take a moment and update your personal information