Deciding Whether Or Not To Have Your Diseased Ash Tree Removed

If there is an ash tree in your yard and it is showing signs of disease, then you have a decision to make. Should you remove the tree, or should you have it treated for disease? In many cases, the best solution is to remove the tree, since the emerald ash borer, a particularly fierce and destructive insect, is to blame for most cases of ash decline in the United States. At the same time, it is never wise to jump to conclusions or take action without significant thought, so here are a few things to consider as you decide what to do with that ash tree.

Is it showing actual symptoms of emerald ash borer infestation?

While most cases of ash decline are due to the emerald ash borer, there's a chance your ash tree has a less serious problem, such as a fungal disease that can be cured with a spray. Thankfully, it is pretty easy to tell whether emerald ash borers are to blame for the damage. Here are the key signs of emerald ash borer infestation:

  • D-shaped holes in the bark
  • Green beetles on the tree
  • Rapid death of leaves, particularly at the top of the crown

If you don't notice any of these signs, then you may instead want to have a tree service come and find out what is wrong with the tree, and treat it accordingly. 

How long has the tree been suffering?

If the tree just started to show signs of decline, there is a chance it can be saved from an emerald ash borer infestation with injections of pesticides into the trunk. However, if the tree has been declining for more than 6 months or a year, the chances of recovery are quite slim, and you're probably better off having the tree removed.

On the other hand, if your tree has been declining for 5 years or more and is still alive, it probably does not have an emerald ash borer infestation — or else, it would be dead by now. The tree may still need to be removed, but it's worth having a tree care company take a look, figure out what's wrong, and go from there.

Hopefully, you now have a better idea of what's really plaguing your ash tree, and whether the tree needs to be removed. Often, an emerald ash borer infestation is to blame, but this is not always the case. For more information about tree removal, contact a local service.