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Tree Care

Why Should I Care About EAB?

January 7, 2020 by John Griffiths, Master Arborist
Infected White Ash Tree

A tree is worth $193,250. That might sound like a bold statement, but according to a professor at the University of Calcutta, a tree living for 50 years will:

  • Generate $31,250 worth of oxygen
  • Provide $62,000 worth of air pollution control
  • Control soil erosion and increase soil fertility to the tune of $31,250
  • Recycle $37,500 worth of water
  • Provide a home for animals worth $31,250

And that does not include the value of fruits, timber or beauty.

The point is, a tree is worth a lot of money. With emerald ash borer (EAB) infecting trees across the state of Iowa and the country at large, there are a lot of valuable investments at risk.

I visit with clients often, and many of them have ash trees on their property. A common dilemma they have is the decision to treat their ash tree, remove their ash tree, or do nothing.

Unfortunately, doing nothing really isn’t an option. Eventually, they will have to take action. Many people think that the EAB reaching the Des Moines area is a death sentence; that all of their ash trees are doomed. That is not true. However, it’s important to take action.

Keep reading to find an ash tree identification guide and options to help make the most educated decision about your ash trees.

Identify Your Tree

First things first, determine if you have an ash tree on your property. Ash trees have these characteristics:

If you’ve determined you have an ash tree on your property, you have the option to chemically treat the tree or remove and replace the tree.

Chemical Treatment

Does your tree provide valuable shade, curb appeal or sentimental value? You can choose to protect it. Treatment for EAB is a systematic insecticide to control the pest population. Our process involves a trunk injection with TREE-äge (active ingredient: Emamectin Benzoate). Treatment can actually be a less expensive option than removal and replacement.

A bonus to having Wright Outdoor Solutions apply these treatments is that we have International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) Certified Arborists who can give you an accurate and educated recommendation.

The preventive treatment is affordable, effective for up to two full growing seasons, and performed from April through October (depending on weather). Schedules typically fill up fast, so scheduling sooner rather than later is recommended.

Removal & Replacement

As I mentioned above, doing nothing is not an option. Without treatment, EAB damage will cause your ash tree to need removal. You can get a jump start on replacing the value your tree provides by removing it now and planting a replacement. The removal and replacement cost varies and depends on many factors including the tree size and location.

Taking Action

When you are ready to take the next step for your ash tree, give our arborists a call at 515.987.0800 or request a quote online.

Skeptical about the damage this little guy can cause? Visit www.emeraldashborer.info to see an interactive map that catalogs its destruction.

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