Ash trees are a common species here in Indiana. But unfortunately, through the months of May and August they are primary targets for an invasive beetle called the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB). These flat-backed, metallic-green beetles are not from around here though. They arrived from Asia over a decade ago inside packing material made from Ash wood. And although first detected in Detroit, Michigan in 2002, they are now found all across the mid-West and eastern coasts as a result of interstate commerce and transportation of Ash firewood, nursery stock, and logs.
Identify Ash Trees
When EABs attack Ash trees, you can see the signs and symptoms within a few days. To determine if your trees are Ash trees, look at their branches and the placement of their twigs. Ash trees have branches with twigs that grow opposite of each other, somewhat like human arms. If the twigs are staggered, it is not an Ash tree. If you do have Ash trees, the next step in determining if they are under attack by EABs, you need to learn the signs and symptoms.
Signs and Symptoms
Keep in mind that many signs and symptoms of Emerald Ash Borer attacks are similar to other tree diseases and Ash tree pests. So it is best to talk to a professional tree care specialist to know for sure if your Ash trees are infested, or simply ill from other circumstances. Here are the common signs and symptoms Ash Trees exhibit under stress from Emerald Ash Borers:
Woodpeckers – If Ash trees are experiencing increased woodpecker activity, it is a sign that Emerald Ash Borers are present. Woodpeckers love these juicy larvae, and will feed on them constantly if they are in your Ash trees.
Epicormic Sprouting – This is a common symptom of a tree under duress. Epicormic sprouting is when a tree starts to grow branches and leaves from anywhere it can, as a desperate attempt to thrive. These branches and leaves usually grow from the base of the trees and the trunk.
Bark Splits – Vertical splits in the bark occur from callus tissue growth that develops as a result of larval galleries. In fact, you can often see larval galleries underneath bark splits.
Crown Die-Back – After several years of EAB larvae feeding, Ash trees will suffer from upper and outer crown die-back. Since EAB larvae prevents adequate nutrition and water intake for an Ash tree, the leaves begin to drop and the branches begin to die throughout the canopy. Foliage discoloration at tree tops can also occur.
Letter-Shaped Holes – Holes that appear in the shape of an “S” or a “D” are common signs of larvae galleries and emergence holes for adult beetles. They are usually around an 1/8 of an inch wide. Larval galleries create the S-shaped holes, while emerging adult beetles create the D-shaped holes.
Larvae – If you can see larvae feeding underneath an Ash tree’s bark, then it is most likely an EAB infestation. They are cream-colored larvae, slightly-flattened and up to 1 ½ inch long.
Beetles – If you can see adult green beetles, they could very-well be Emerald Ash Borers. It is encouraged to contact a licensed tree service company for help identifying EABs, and resolving Emerald Ash Borer problems.
Budget Tree Care
Call Budget Tree Care at 317-590-1842 for professional tree removal and tree care in Indianapolis, Indiana and its surrounding locations. Owner, Curt Scott, has several decades of experience in the tree care industry, and uses the latest advancements and technologies to provide quality tree service at an affordable price. In fact, we guarantee to FIT YOUR BUDGET! Request a free estimate or free tree care advice, anytime. Call 317-590-1842 to speak with Curt directly, and see for yourself just how affordable Indianapolis tree service can be!