Minneapolis Park Board removes emerald ash borer-infested trees

The Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board (MPRB) has begun removing 15 ash trees infested with emerald ash borer and 25 suspected infested trees at Tower Hill Park. Tower Hill Park is the first confirmed site of emerald ash borers in Minneapolis. Emerald ash borer is an invasive beetle accidentally introduced from Asia that attacks ash trees. Its larvae tunnel into the wood and feed on the inner bark, ultimately killing the tree. The Minneapolis urban forest includes more than 200,000 ash trees on boulevards and on private property. That’s 21 percent of all Minneapolis trees.

Emerald ash borer has already killed more than 40 million ash trees nationwide and is found in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Kentucky, Ohio, Virginia, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, New York, and Maryland; and Ontario and Quebec, Canada.

If you have space in your yard to plant a tree, now is a good time to start one. If you have an ash tree in your yard, planting its replacement now will give it a chance to start providing shade. Research has proven that trees are a valuable investment and improve urban quality of life. Healthy trees are beautiful, increase property values, help improve air quality, reduce greenhouse gases by absorbing carbon dioxide, save energy, keep the city cooler, provide homes for wildlife and help manage stormwater.

For more information on emerald ash borer or to report an ash tree infested with emerald ash borer, visit www.mda.state.mn.us/eab .

Published Mar. 26, 2010