The Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) will kill an ash tree within 3-5 years of infestation. The EAB was first seen in the upper midwest of the U.S. and is now spreading throughout the northeast United States. It’s presence in Sharpley is imminent. Sharpley has 303 ash trees, which is approximately 38% of our total street tree numbers. Ash trees can be found on every street in our neighborhood.
We have discussed EAB with the State Forestry department and several other communities to develop a plan to implement upon infestation. As a result, ash trees have been given priority for removal in our current ongoing street tree work.
The health of each ash tree will be assessed annually. See Evaluating Street Tree Removals to learn more and use the Ash Tree Locator to learn if you have an ash street tree located on your property. As a community, our options are to either treat or remove ash trees.
Treatment costs between $150-$200 per tree and lasts about one and a half years. Treatment will be used to manage the healthiest ash trees and to preserve Sharpley’s canopy. Treatment only defers the inevitable removal. It is not a cure.
The cost of removal is dependent on the size of the ash tree. The vast majority of Sharpley’s ash trees are very large. The average ash tree removal with replacement is projected to be $1400.
These factors are taken into consideration when deciding to remove an ash tree:
- available funds
- health of the tree
- aesthetics of the tree
- cost of removal
- cost of treatment
- location of the tree in the canopy
Strategies to Deal with the Emerald Ash Borer
The emerald ash borer has created a dilemma for our neighborhood. At a cost of $1400 per tree removal we will need over $750,000 to remove of all the neighborhood ash trees. As a result, we have currently implemented these strategies to help manage costs of the emerald ash borer issue.
- increased annual civic association dues
- prioritized the removal of ash trees in our annual street tree work
- waive dues for one year for those homeowners who are willing to remove their own ash tree. The association will also pay for a replacement planting.
- investigate the possibility of corporate or personal donations
- investigate municipal grant opportunities