Originating in Asia, the Emerald Ash Borer is a hard-to-stop blight that is laying waste to ash trees in the U.S. Here, this particular borer only eats ash trees—and nothing on this continent eats the borer! This “perfect storm” has led many arborists to call this pest the “Perfect Predator.” The right tree service at the right time is the best chance your ash trees have of survival.
What Is an Emerald Ash Borer?
The ash borer (Agrilus planipennis fairmaire) is a little green beetle with a big appetite for ash trees, which are beautiful shade-bearing trees that are part of many western U.S. landscapes. This little bugger was first found stateside in 2002 in Michigan, probably having traveled there on hardwood shipping pallets or crates out of Asia by plane or cargo ship. They have now been found in Michigan, Indiana, Minnesota, Illinois, Kentucky, New York, Missouri, Kansas, Ohio, Colorado, West Virginia, Virginia, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin—as well as in Canada, in Ontario and Quebec.
These tiny metallic beetles feed on the leaves of ash trees but don’t hurt the tree’s inner infrastructure as such. It’s the life cycle of the pest that causes the big problem. Emerald ash borer larvae eat the inner bark of a tree, and this hurts the vascular system—the network that carries nutrient-rich moisture to branches and leaves, helping the tree survive. When the vascular system sustains enough damage, the tree dies. Within two years of infestation, most of a tree’s canopy will basically starve to death. Without healthy leaves to complete photosynthesis, the tree dies soon after.
Why Does the Ash Borer Matter?
The ash borer is laying waste to U.S. ash populations. Not only does this negatively impact species diversity for the trees themselves and for animals that live in those trees—it can have a negative impact on people as well. In urban locations, the rapid destruction of so much green space can harm property values, hurt stormwater mitigation efforts, increase energy demands and have a demoralizing effect on local residents. Official estimates suggest that the emerald ash borer could cause as much as $10 to $20 billion in urban forest losses in the next decade, perhaps eventually causing the North American ash to become extinct.
Detect to Protect.
The right tree service can save your ash trees. Ben Hamza, PhD, TruGreen®’s Director of Technical Operations, says “Early detection is key to protecting ash trees.” With TruGreen’s special equipment, their PhD-certified specialists can detect the beetles’ presence at a very early stage, when the tree still appears healthy to the naked eye. “Professional help is needed,” says Hamza, “because it is often difficult for homeowners to identify early stages of an infestation.”
TruGreen’s ash borer tree services begin with a free evaluation to determine whether an infestation exists. Non-infested trees in known high-threat areas can also benefit from the ash borer tree service, since it can protect against original infestation. If a tree is already infested or if the homeowner desires to protect a healthy tree, the specialist will treat the tree with a proprietary trunk-injection method designed to deliver the treatment product directly to the tree’s vascular system.
Go With Trusted Tree Service.
TruGreen’s powerful emerald ash borer tree service has been tested in markets across the U.S. In Lakewood, Ohio, for example, TruGreen has injected more than 235 ash trees since 2013. In public areas, TruGreen has treated over 12,000 ash trees and plans to increase that number to over 25,000 by the end of 2014. TruGreen’s specialists continue to work at the cutting edge of tree services, with treatments for a range of other ash borers and an eye toward future problems as well. Emerging problems such as Dutch elm disease are already on the TruGreen tree service radar.
Call TruGreen at 866.688.6722, or visit TruGreen.com for more on the service that sets TruGreen apart.