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Emerald Ash Borer Colorado Expert Answers

Posted on: March 27th, 2014

Where did the emerald ash borer come from? 
 Emerald ash borer (Agrilus planipennis) was introduced accidently into Michigan in wood packing material imported from eastern Asia sometime in the 1990’s. It became well established in Michigan until ash trees started dying in 2002, when it was first detected. It is responsible for the deaths of millions of ash trees in the Midwest and eastern U.S.

How long has the emerald ash borer been in Colorado? 
The emerald ash borer was first detected in Boulder, CO. on September 23rd, 2013. It was confirmed on September 26th, 2013. At this time, it has not been found anywhere else in the state. According to the Department of Agriculture, it may have been here approximately 3 years.

What type of trees does the emerald ash borer attack? 
All species of the North American ash (Fraxinus sp.) are susceptible. Mountain ash (Sorbus sp.) is NOT included.

What do emerald ash borers look like? 
Emerald ash borers are a bright, metallic-green color. They are approximately ½” long and have a flattened back. They can be mistaken for other green insects, so a positive identification by a professional is necessary. Learn About Different Types of Borers Here

Emerald Ash Borer Boulder

What is the life cycle of this borer? 
Adults emerge between mid-May through late July, when they feed on ash leaves. They mate, and then females lay eggs (average of 60-90 per female) in bark cracks. Larvae hatch from the eggs within one week and then bore through the bark and into the cambium. Larvae feed under ash tree bark from mid-summer through the next spring, producing the “S”-shaped tunnels. They pupate in the spring and the new generation of adults emerges shortly thereafter.

Emerald ash borer denver

How is this pest spread? 
The EAB adult flies ½ – 1 mile a year. However, borers can also be spread via firewood from infested trees. DO NOT move ash firewood from ash trees out of the area.

Does it only attack dying or stressed trees? 
Whereas other boring insects prey upon stressed or weakened trees, emerald ash borer successfully attack all ash in its wake.

How big of problem is EAB? 
 EAB is now considered the most destructive forest pest ever seen in North America. Just in the Denver area, there are 1.45 million ash trees at risk.

How do I know if I have an ash tree? 
We recommend a Landscape Care Consultant visit your property to verify your ash tree inventory. Click Here to Learn More.

How do I know if my tree is infested with emerald ash borer? 
Initial detection is not easy. We recommend a Landscape Care Consultant visit to evaluate your tree and we’ll make recommendations at that time. See Sign of Infestation Here

What is Swingle recommending for treatment options to protect my ash tree? 
1. Within 15 miles of a detected emerald ash borer infestation, we are recommending a trunk injection completed in the spring. Includes zip codes:
80005, 80007, 80020, 80021, 80025, 80026, 80027, 80028, 80038, 80301, 80302, 80303, 80304, 80306, 80307, 80308, 80309, 80310, 80314, 80321, 80322, 80323, 80328, 80329, 80403, 80455, 80466, 80471, 80481, 80501, 80502, 80503, 80533, 80540, 80544
Includes Boulder, Lyons, Longmont, Niwot, Erie, Lafayette, Superior, Broomfield, Westminster, Nederland

Emerald Ash Borer Colorado

2. Outside of the 15-mile detection area, we are recommending a soil injection to be completed this fall. We will recommend a soil injection beginning in the spring.

What other recommendations would Swingle have for my ash tree? 
We would like to set up a visit for your Landscape Care Consultant to evaluate your ash trees and make recommendations based on your trees current condition. They may recommend the following: 
1. Pruning
 2. Tree Fertilization 
3. Lilac/Ash Borer or Ash Bark Beetle spray.

Can I plant a new ash tree, if I have to remove mine or I’m looking to plant a new tree? Do not plant new ash trees. Good substitutes for ash include maples, lindens, honeylocusts, hackberrys, oaks and elms.

Does lilac/ash borer spray or ash bark beetle spray treat for EAB? 
No, those borers feed in the tree differently and have a different life cycle from the emerald ash borer. The spray control is not effective for the EAB.

If I treat my ash tree for EAB, do I need the sprays for lilac/ash borer or ash bark beetle? 
The trunk injection for EAB will also control lilac/ash borer and ash bark beetle.


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