Time running out to save Ash trees in Stevens Point

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STEVENS POINT, Wis. The forestry of Stevens Point is facing a looming deadline with more than 500 trees at stake because of an invasive species from Asia. Treatment specialists will be throughout the Stevens Point area attending to infested trees until the end of June.

"Basically this year is our last chance to do it. We've been treating trees for about two years so if people want to take care of their ash trees, they have to do it now" The City Forester of Stevens Point Todd Ernster said.

The Forestry of Stevens Point has treated about 2,000 tree thus far, but trees that are not treated by the end of June, aren't expected to be able to be saved due to the progression of the emerald ash borer in those trees.

The emerald ash borer is an invasive beetle species from Asia. It feeds on ash trees, eventually killing them, when its lays its larva under the bark of the trees and cuts off the vessels that supply water and other nutrients to the tree.

Todd Ernster has already identified 100 tree that will have to be removed because those trees are already too far gone. Ernster said it shouldn't be a concern to people who don't have ash trees on their property and is anticipating the insecticides used will have minimum effect on the environment.

"We're going to be drilling into the tree and nothing is going to be poured out onto the sides. The tree will just take it straight up and so that lessens the chance that bees will be affected, any other exposure to pets or anything" Ernster said.

There are thousands of trees not on city property. Those ash trees follow on the responsibility of the property owners. There are ways to treat your ash trees on your own. For more help you can follow this link provided by the Stevens Point Forestry: http://stevenspoint.com/DocumentCenter/View/4106

In short, Ernster said there are products at places like Lowes and Menards. You also have the option hire a treatment specialist. The City of Stevens Point has a contract with TruGreen Lawn Care.