KC Gardens

Emerald ash borer — is this the year to take steps?

An adult emerald ash borer is shown in this undated photo released by Michigan State University.
An adult emerald ash borer is shown in this undated photo released by Michigan State University. ASSOCIATED PRESS

QUESTION:

I’ve got a huge ash tree in Shawnee. Is this the year when I need to begin innoculating it against the emerald ash borer? Is it expensive? Thanks - Cindy

ANSWER:

EAB is continuing its spread throughout the KC metro area. It has been found in multiple locations in the Shawnee area. The decision to treat or not is a personal choice based on the tree’s health and many other factors. Extension only recommends to treat trees that are in excellent health and condition. Trees that have defects or in decline should not be treated and considered for removal. When to start treatment is also a personal choice. If you do not want to take any chances with EAB infecting your tree then treating this year would be recommended. If you don’t mind taking a little risk you could wait another year as the movement of EAB is slower at this point. If you do decide to treat, keep in mind the ideal window or best time to treat is closing as spring treatments are considered the best time to treat. That does not mean treatments cannot be done later in the year. Hope that helps and I understand your concerns as I have a 25-year-old green ash tree in my front yard. – Dennis, Johnson County Extension

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