Now Is A Great Time To Protect Your Ash Trees

Last week I explained how the emerald ash borer (EAB) made its way to our area and how you can keep more from arriving. Today, I’m going to tell you how to

Photo: Howard Russell
Michigan State University

protect your own trees from attack and how to treat them if they’re already hosting this insidious pest.

We can apply a preventive or treatment to your ash trees right up until the ground freezes. The product we use is injected directly into the tree where the new hatch of EAB larvae is just beginning to feed. If your tree has already been infested with this pest, the larvae are small, weak and vulnerable, making this an ideal time to treat.

Our plant health care professionals have tested all of the materials labeled for EAB and have found that one is most effective. It only has to be applied every two years to prevent EAB from attacking a healthy tree. If your tree has already been attacked, annual treatments are required to control the EAB.

I write and talk about preventive treatment whenever the opportunity arises. Because although prevention and treatment can be costly, Ash trees are beautiful shade trees. It would be a shame if they went the way of the chestnut and the American elm. Besides their beauty and grace, what would happen to baseball if ash trees were to become extinct? Wooden bats are made almost exclusively of ash. Would we have to listen to the ping of aluminum in the big leagues instead of the solid crack of wood?

Seriously, when you crunch the numbers, you’ll find that it will take many years of preventive or treatment applicatioions to equal the cost to remove and replace a dead ash tree. Most of the ash trees around here are large and stately. This means our arborists have to call on their knowledge, skills and specialized equipment to take down a dead tree. It isn’t as simple as just felling it.

If you own an ash tree, decide now to make the investment to save it. Our plant health care professionals will inspect your tree to determine if it needs treatment or preventive care and share their findings with you. If you wait until spring, the larvae will be large, strong and more resistant. In fact, they’ll be preparing to pupate and morph into tiny, metallic green adults. The adults will chew a “D” shaped hole to the outside and begin looking for a mate so they can continue destroying this beautiful, valuable tree.

2 comments on “Now Is A Great Time To Protect Your Ash Trees

  1. We have had our trees treated in the spring for the past four years. We’ve lost one and see another in decline. Should we also have them treated in the fall? We are located in the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia

  2. Seems like more and more of these types of pest have been showing up in recent years. I have noticed a lot of our pines dying in recent years. They have a weird kind of spider web looking stuff in them when they die. Is there any correlation?

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