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Alder Lauren Cnare

Alder Lauren Cnare

Home Address:
5218 Kevins Way
Madison , WI 53714

Phone: 608-235-9179
district3@cityofmadison.com
Common Council Office:
210 Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd
Room 417
Madison, WI 53703
Phone: (608) 266-4071
Fax: (608) 267-8669
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This is gonna bug you - the Emerald Ash Borer is in Madison

November 26, 2013 10:10 PM

About a year ago, the Common Council approved the Emerald Ash Borer Report and Recommendations, a plan long in study and implications for most of Madison and in particular the older parts of District 3 – Heritage Heights, Rolling Meadows and Hiestand neighborhoods. There are probably ash trees all over D3 and the city, but some neighborhoods have very high concentrations. (Map of D3 ash trees.) Ash trees make up a significant number of the street, and some yard trees that came with late 1950s and mid-1960s new home landscaping.

The emerald ash borer, or EAB, is an invasive insect that destroys ash trees. Since EAB is a hungry and damaging insect on the march across the nation, it is very likely we will see a massive die-off in this tree species, leaving our streets looking pretty bare as this insect munches its way through Madison.

It turns out that our City Foresters and Parks staff were wise to prepare us because today the Parks Division held a news conference confirming that the bug is here. Here's the news release:

City of Madison officials received confirmation of the presence of Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) on the north side of Madison near Warner Park. As a result, Dane County will be quarantined. The quarantine prohibits some wood products from being moved out of the county to areas that are not infested.

Madison Parks Forestry officials received a call from a private tree company reporting suspected EAB infestation in a tree they were removing on private property near Warner Park. The Madison Parks forestry staff investigated the site and surrounding areas. Forestry staff sent in the evidence to the State of Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade & Consumer Protection. Confirmation of EAB was received Friday, November 22, 2013.

The City of Madison has been working on its tactical response to EAB since 2008. An Emerald Ash Borer Taskforce, including representatives of Madison Parks, Forestry, Mayor's office, City Streets Division, and City Fleet Division, was created to coordinate assessment of the EAB threat, plan various response strategies, review the latest research and act to mitigate impacts on the city's tree canopy, ensure public safety, protect the environment and contain costs.  The EAB Plan was approved by the Common Council in September 2012 and updated in September 2013.

 

The City of Madison has an estimated 21,700 publically owned street (terrace) ash trees, and unknown number of ash trees in parks and thousands more on private property. In the Warner Park area where EAB is confirmed, there are over 2600 publically-owned ash trees.

The following is a summary of the City's plans for public trees is based off the approved EAB Plan:

  • Madison Parks Forestry will continue to do branch sampling in the Warner Park area to find the 'epi-center' of the infestation.
  • Over the winter, Forestry staff will remove publically owned ash trees (street and park trees) that are in poor condition and/or are located under power lines.
  • In the spring the city will implement a chemical treatment program for trees that are in healthy condition and over 10 inches diameter. The city will use the injection treatments versus soil drench treatments to ensure the protection of ground and surface water quality.
  • Madison Parks Forestry will provide an "Adopt-a-Tree" program for private citizens to help save, at their own expense, a publically owned ash tree in a Madison park. The details on this program will be provided later in the winter as the treatment programs cannot start until spring.
  • Madison Parks Forestry will continue with branch sampling in all areas of the city to look for any other infestation locations.
  • Going forward, Madison Parks Forestry will replant publically-owned trees in most locations. If people would like to help support this undertaking, a specific fund has been created with the Madison Parks Foundation

What can Homeowners do about their own privately owned trees:

  • Keep a close watch on ash trees for signs of possible EAB infestation: thinning canopy, D-shaped holes in the bark, new branches sprouting low on the truck, cracked bark and woodpeckers pulling at the bark to get to insect larvae beneath it.
  • Call a Certified Arborist for expert advice.
  • If you are considering preventative treatment, the city of Madison encourages you to use the injection method rather than the soil drench method in order to protect our lakes and ground water.

 

As Madison officials continue to work on the Emerald Ash Borer infestation, we will keep citizens informed of any changes or discoveries. Please visit the Madison Parks Forestry EAB website.

 




Tags: Trees

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