Emerald ash borer (EAB) is a very destructive insect that was discovered in Longmont in June 2016 just west of the intersection of 9th Avenue and Hover Street. EAB is continuing to multiply its population and is expanding its territory in Longmont. New detections will continue to pop up for many years and threaten all ash trees in the landscape. The best thing that Forestry Services and owners of private ash trees can do is have a plan for their ash trees.
Forestry Services originally identified 2,790 City-managed ash trees, accounting for approximately 13% of Longmont’s public tree population. Longmont’s plan is to protect high-value public ash trees, preemptively remove ash trees not slated for treatment and also remove ash trees as they succumb to EAB. Longmont has identified and treated 944 ash trees which represent only 34% of our total ash population. This treatment will help maintain many of the high-value ash trees that provide environmental benefits, shade, and character to the City of Longmont. Protecting ash trees from EAB is an ongoing endeavor that requires treatment every two to three years for the life of the tree. Forestry Services evaluates the health of all individual ash trees prior to the treatment year and may choose to remove trees from treatment if the trees are declining in health. To date, Longmont has preemptively removed 509 ash trees which still leaves 1,337 ash trees susceptible to EAB.
Longmont Forestry Services is doing its part to preserve valuable ash trees in the urban forest, but private ash trees account for the largest portion in the urban forest. Owners and managers of private ash trees are encouraged to make a plan for their ash tree/s. Options for your ash tree may include treatment, removal, and/or shadow planting; planting a new tree near an existing ash tree in preparation for removal of the ash tree. Visit Longmont Forestry to explore the options for your ash tree.
Forestry Services continues to be active in planting new trees in Longmont and will be holding the third annual Sprit of Arbor Day Tree Sale through April 13. With financial contributions from the
Platte River Power Authority, Longmont Forestry Services will provide 225 reduced cost trees to Longmont Residents as replacements for future ash trees lost from EAB. Forestry Services thanks all those that purchase trees and are helping to maintain Longmont’s urban forest.
Are you curious which public ash trees are being treated? Do you want to know more about your options for your private ash trees? Do you need help making a plan for your private ash tree and want to hire a Certified Arborist? Check out LongmontColorado.gov/forestry.