I’m a pest too!
Perhaps some tire of my frequent articles on the Emerald Ash Borer that is bearing down on Central Iowa. My cause is simply to make all aware of what we are facing. Check the species of trees in your yard, or along your street or throughout your community and rural area. If they’re black, white or green ash trees, their years are numbered. Remember, there is no known cure for an infected tree, for once the exotic insect pest has entered the tree through the bark, the cambium will be encroached by the larvae, and girdling and irreversible damage with death to the tree is inevitable.
On Monday I drove to Fairfield and Burlington to observe the onset of eventual devastation of these three species of trees, which tend to make up the majority of shade trees that were planted following the Dutch Elm disaster of forty years ago. In Fairfield, I could pick out the ones where vitality was compromised and advanced color change in the upper canopy foliage was evident. It was fairly easy to discern the healthy ash trees from the infected. In Burlington, it was an advanced story. The city has already been declared “infested,” and in certain parts of the community ash trees had been removed, or were marked for removal, and foliage vitality was such that the insect pest had already done its job on many I observed. No ash tree in the nation is immune from this scourge that probably made its way to America from Asia inside the wood of shipping crates.
If you have ash trees, be proactive in their replacement. Unless a biological or chemical cure miraculously occurs, the trees are most likely doomed. The best that can be done is to enjoy the ash while it remains healthy, but start planning and planting replacements as soon as possible. Why not yet this fall? Or, no later than next spring.
If you have any technical difficulties, either with your username and password or with the payment options, please contact us by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org