Protecting Your Tree from the Emerald Ash Borer

Protecting Your Tree from the Emerald Ash Borer


The first thing you need to do when considering
treating for Emerald Ash Borer is ensure that you indeed have an ash tree. Wisconsin
is home to four species of ash trees – green, white, black and blue. Most ash trees in yards
or on streets are either green or white ash. You can identify true ash trees by the opposite
branching pattern and compound leaves typically with 5 to 9 leaflets as shown in the diagrams
to the right. If you happen to have a Mountain Ash planted in your yard, you’ll be relieved
to know that Mountain ash is not a true ash tree and is not attacked by Emerald Ash Borer.
The second step in the process of treating for Emerald Ash Borer is to measure the circumference
of the tree so that you can determine the amount of product that you need as well as
the amount of water that is required. The next step is to remove the mulch or the bark
that is surrounding the base of the tree to a distance of about 18 to 24 inches so that
you create basically an inverted volcano so that when you apply the material it will stay
within the area and it will move or infiltrate down into the soil and be absorbed by the
roots. The next step in the process for treating Emerald Ash Borer is to select a product.
For demonstration purposes only, we have selected the Bayer Tree and Shrub Protect and Feed
which contains two chemicals as well as a fertilizer. The Bayer advanced label requires
one gallon of water for trees 50 inches in circumference or smaller. And consequently,
because our tree is 22 inches in circumference we will be using one gallon of water to apply
our Bayer advanced product which we will measure out in just one moment. Before we measure
out our Bayer advanced product here are a few quick notes about pesticide safety. Before
using any pesticide, read all of the directions on that product’s label, make sure to follow
these directions precisely. This includes wearing adequate personal protective equipment
such as gloves and keeping children and pets away from the treated area. Many products
available today for homeowners come with some type of measuring device, keep in mind that
any measuring device, bucket, watering can, or other container that comes into contact
with the pesticide should not be reused for other purposes around the house. And now we
will measure out the appropriate amount of Bayer advanced product that is applied to
the ash tree that we will be treating. Because the circumference of the tree was 22 inches
and the label requires 1 fluid once of product per inch circumference, we have poured 22
ounces of the Bayer advanced product into the one gallon of water that we measured out
previously. The next step in the process for treating Emerald Ash Borer is to physically
apply the solution of the Bayer advanced product and the water around the tree in a circular
manner in the area where we have pulled the mulch back. The final step in the process
for treating for Emerald Ash Borer, once the material has had the opportunity to infiltrate
into the soil is to replace the mulch back over the area where you removed it around
the base of the tree. When it comes to timing, spring is the ideal time to treat your trees
for Emerald Ash Borer. However, research has shown that fall applications are also effective.
Treating your trees may be most appropriate if you live in a country currently quarantined
for Emerald Ash Borer or if you live within 15 to 20 miles of a known infestation. Insecticide
treatments are most effective when applied to healthy trees. Applications to stressed
or injured trees may not be effective. Protecting your trees early, yields the best results.
Lastly, remember that every tree and situation is unique. Your county extension agents are
excellent sources of information for maintaining the health of your yard trees.

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