Galesburg is urging residents to take a proactive approach now that the Emerald Ash Borer has been detected in the city.
Larry Cox, Director of Public Works, said property owners should determine whether they have any ash trees. If they do, the trees should be checked for signs of the destructive pest.
Typically, branches at the top of an infected tree will die off first and more will die in the following years. The bugs are smaller than a penny and attach to the top of trees so it’s easier to spot signs of the Emerald Ash Borer than it is to see the insect itself.
Cox said residents should consider all options and work with a licensed professional to treat or remove a tree.
More information about the city’s EAB Readiness Plan can be found on the city’s website. In addition, the city plans to hold workshops on the issue early in 2013.
Cox said residents need to keep a simple fact in mind:
“Every ash tree in town will eventually become infected and die.”
He said the EAB had been detected on and around the Knox College campus. The discovery of the insect in Galesburg did not come as a surprise.
“We’ve been preparing now for five years or so, trying to be proactive and have a plan ready in place,” Cox said.
Cox said every community in Illinois should be prepared for the arrival of the pest.
Knox County was added to the state’s EAB quarantine list this week. 40% of the state is now on the list.
Cox said the city has about 600 publicly owned ash trees. It’s not known how many more are on private property.