Ask a Question forum: Green Ash Tree

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Name: Plantania
Schaumburg, Il. (Zone 5b)
Plantainia
Jan 6, 2014 9:32 PM CST
We lost two Green Ash trees to then Emerald Ash Borer. One in our yard was 50 plus feet tall with a 20 inch diameter trunk. It was a great source of shade. We had a smaller one in our yard treated by our arborist. He gave it a 2 year treatment. The 2 year period will be finished this spring. I was wondering if anyone else had results from trying to save Green Ash trees infested by the Emerald Ash Borer? Our neighborhood lost at least 40 percent of our mature trees.
Name: Carole
Clarksville, TN (Zone 6b)
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SongofJoy
Jan 7, 2014 7:02 AM CST
Hi Plantania. The Emerald Ash Borer has proven to be a ferocious enemy in some areas of the country. We are under a quarantine for the EAB here. They say that if there is an infested tree within 15 miles, you can consider your ash trees to be infested as well. Ugh. The treatments work under the right conditions, but the issue can definitely be reinfestation. If you have lost that many trees in your neighborhood, it makes me wonder if it's just a matter of time. However, experts are saying that this wicked freezing weather may help to reduce or completely eliminate the EAB in some locations. I hope so. There is a systemic insecticide that's available in stores should you want to try to treat the tree yourself. It's absorbed by the roots so doesn't require spraying. There are definitely a number of considerations when trying to save a tree from EAB.

http://www.emeraldashborer.info/files/Multistate_EAB_Insecti...
The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched -- they must be felt with the heart. ~ Helen Keller
Name: Plantania
Schaumburg, Il. (Zone 5b)
Plantainia
Jan 7, 2014 11:12 AM CST
Smiling Thank you Song of Joy for your information about the systemic insecticide. This area had an early warning of the infestation before it got here. Our parkway tree was cut down over three years ago and replaced with a crimson maple(name escapes me). They found out too late that it would have been less expensive to treat the parkway trees than to wait until they had to cut them down. There was a nice canopy of trees over most of the neighborhood. Now it looks like it did over 35 years ago when everything was just being built.

My son Nick and I are big tree huggers. He is the one to get the root feeder out for fertilizing and deep root watering of the remaining trees during dry spells. Smiling
Name: Reid
North Branch, MN (Zone 4b)
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Anderwood
Jan 29, 2014 4:05 PM CST
Hi. I'm not sure how cold it has gotten over there, but I have heard the EAB has a slim chance of surviving in Minnesota, as it cannot stand temperatures below -20 very well. That is a huge silver lining on our brutal winter!
Name: Plantania
Schaumburg, Il. (Zone 5b)
Plantainia
Jan 29, 2014 7:24 PM CST
Thank you Anderwood for your information on very cold weather and the EAB. As a rule it doesn't get much lower than ten below zero in Schaumburg, Il. This year we got down to nineteen below one day. It's the wind chill that can make it feel like fifty below zero or more. Since I have the only green ash in the entire neighborhood, maybe the EAB have left the area. Our town elected to try and preserve only the most mature trees on public ground. I don't think they realized that it would cost them more money to cut the trees down rather than treat them. They were late in taking any preventive measures. A town thirty miles away was devastated by EAB three years before it reared it's ugly head in Schaumburg. Our town used to have a Treetown rating award. It was a lovely, lush place to live. It's still a great place to live but looks like a newly developed neighborhood instead of one that's thirty-five plus years old. Our parkway tree was replaced with a crimson maple. I don't know the botanical name. The town has learned not to count heavily on one kind of tree. They have planted a larger variety. Thumbs up
Name: Carole
Clarksville, TN (Zone 6b)
Cherish today
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages Plant Identifier I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar
Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Cat Lover Avid Green Pages Reviewer Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Birds
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SongofJoy
Jan 30, 2014 4:29 AM CST
A hard lesson learned but a wise one. Smiling
The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched -- they must be felt with the heart. ~ Helen Keller
Name: Rick R.
near Minneapolis, MN zone 4a
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages The WITWIT Badge Garden Photography Region: Minnesota Plant Identifier
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Leftwood
Jan 30, 2014 10:19 AM CST
>>>> Our town elected to try and preserve only the most mature trees on public ground. I don't think they realized that it would cost them more money to cut the trees down rather than treat them.

Are you sure? One has to weigh the total costs. Keep in mind that trees would need to be treated in perpetuity, rather than a one time cost. Anything living is not static. It's not like a statue and you're not saving it forever; all living trees will die. And the bigger it gets, the more it would cost to remove.

We don't even know what the long term effects of these newer chemicals are. Traditionally, pesticides used to kill borers are very toxic, and many have already been banned. Using them in public spaces could be thought of as irresponsible. A claim that would be made by any environmentalist. Certainly, it's a consideration. There could easily be lawsuits against the city for supposed exposure.

I have to say, I side with your town on this. In fact, just this year I took down the only green ash in my yard (18 inch diameter trunk) in advance of the insect infestation here. I'd much rather get a head start on planting a tree that will naturally withstand the environment, rather than me coddling it.
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I read that the U of Minnesota predicted 80% kill of the Emerald ash borer after the early January polar vortex in Minnesota. Temps went below -20F. This second stint is not quite as cold, but is more prolonged for us, and may actually do more damage to the insect.
Name: Plantania
Schaumburg, Il. (Zone 5b)
Plantainia
Feb 3, 2014 4:20 PM CST
Leftwood, thank you for your input on the Green Ash. The winters here are much more severe with stronger wind gusts and larger drifts of snow. You shovel the driveway and the wind blows the snow right back. This is due to the removal of ten mature trees that were on my small court. Even without leaves they did a good job of screening the wind. We have very few squirrels and the birds have dropped off considerably. I enjoy feeding the critters especially during the winter when food is scarce. I have many shrubberies in my yard but they have been stripped clean of their berries.

We have spent thirty-seven years here watching our trees mature. At my age I do not have thirty-five years left to wait until trees mature. In fact, the village has run out of money to replace the trees they took down so there will be no new trees on public property.

Have you seen photos of a town that treated their mature trees? I saw it on this web sight. Their trees have come back all lush green, most were half dead with bark falling off. They were treated many years ago. I'm glad no one talked them out of saving their trees. Sad

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