Residents are encouraged to take steps to mitigate the effects of the expected tree loss across the city as well as be on the lookout for signs and symptoms of the emerald ash borer (EAB) infestation. Here is what you can do:
- Determine if you have ash trees on your property. Look for signs of EAB damage, which include dieback of leaves in the upper one-third of the tree's branches, heavy woodpecker activity, bark splitting, S-shaped larvae tunnels under the bark, or a significant amount of water sprouts on the trunk. If you suspect an EAB infestation, please call a certified tree service provider.
- DO not plant new ash trees. For a list of recommended trees to replant, visit the University of Minnesota Extension website.
- Consider removal of declining or small ash trees on your property now, especially if they are small enough to do the removal yourself. This may save on the cost of removal in the future. Keep in mind that most trees will require a professional to remove.
- To prevent the accelerated spread of adult beetles, MDA guidelines recommend pruning and removal of ash during the months of October through April when the EAB is dormant. If possible, avoid pruning and removal of ash trees during the months of May through September, when the EAB is active.
- You can find a list of compost sites in the county on the Washington County website. Tree removal companies usually will dispose of the tree for you. In order to prevent the spread of EAB, all ash wood should be properly destroyed within Woodbury.
- Early detection and preventive treatments with approved insecticides can prolong the life of an ash tree. Tree contractors with pesticide applicators licenses should be consulted to discuss treatment options. Before deciding to treat your tree, educate yourself about the pros and cons of these chemicals. The city recommends the trunk injection application method; the soil drench application method has a higher risk for unwanted environmental effects. Keep in mind that there is no "cure" for EAB infestation and insecticide treatments will be needed every one to three years, depending on the chemical used. Hire a certified arborist with a pesticide applicator's license to perform these treatments.
- Do not remove or treat ash trees in the public right-of-way near the street (boulevard trees), as these may be managed by the city in some areas. Woodbury Heights, Park Hills, and Royal Oaks are the neighborhoods where boulevard trees are most likely city trees. Call the Public Works Department at 651-714-3720 if you have questions.
Learn more at the MDA website.