City asks residents to check their ash trees for emerald ash borer

Guelph, ON, May 21, 2015 – The City is asking residents and land owners to watch for signs of the emerald ash borer (EAB) on their property and to know what options are available for managing an infestation.

“The City has developed a plan to handle the EAB infestation of City-owned ash trees; however, much of Guelph’s urban forest is located on private land,” says Timea Filer, urban forestry field technologist. “We ask residents to check their private property for ash trees, assess the health of those trees, and treat or remove them if their condition calls for it. We all have a role to play in keeping our tree canopy healthy.”

Property owners are responsible for managing an EAB infestation on private property. Trees can be managed either through treatment or removal.

Ash trees can be treated with TreeAzin®, a natural pest control product registered under the Pest Control Products Act for use against the EAB. An ash tree in good health may still benefit if TreeAzin® is administered between April and the end of August, as set out by Health Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Agency. Residents are encouraged to check with a certified arborist or tree care professional to assess whether their ash tree is suitable for treatment.

An infested ash tree that is dead or dying can be a hazard and may be in violation of the City’s Property Standards By-Law. To have infested limbs or trees removed safely, a property owner should contact a certified arborist or tree care company.

The City’s Tree By-law may affect tree removal on properties larger than 0.2 hectares (0.5 acres), and a tree removal permit may be required. Property owners may be eligible for an exemption from a tree removal permit if the tree is found to be infested with EAB.

About the Emerald Ash Borer

The EAB is a highly destructive, non-native, wood-boring beetle that feeds under the bark of ash trees. The City has been monitoring its presence since it was first discovered in Canada in 2002. The EAB was confirmed in the south end of Guelph in the fall of 2011 and in 2013 testing confirmed that the EAB was present throughout the city. Now established, it is expected that close to 100 per cent of Guelph’s untreated ash trees will be killed over the next 10 years.

For more information

Timea Filer
Urban Forestry Field Technologist
Parks and Recreation
519-822-1260 extension 3352
timea.filer@guelph.ca