DATE: March 22, 2022
For Immediate Release
CONTACT: Tom Pawelk
(763) 295-2711 | Parks.Info@ci.monticello.mn.us
Emerald Ash Borer Discovered in Monticello
Monticello, MN – The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) confirmed an emerald ash borer (EAB) infestation in the City of Monticello. City of Monticello parks, arts, and recreation staff reported the EAB infestation to the MDA for confirmation.
There are several things residents should look for when checking for emerald ash borer.
- Be sure you’ve identified an ash tree. This is an important first step since EAB only feeds on ash trees. Ash trees have opposite branching – meaning branches come off the trunk directly across from each other. On older trees, the bark is in a tight, diamond-shaped pattern. Younger trees have a relatively smooth bark.
- Look for woodpecker damage. Woodpeckers like EAB larvae and woodpecker holes may indicate the presence of EAB.
- Check for bark cracks. EAB larvae tunneling under the bark can cause the bark to split open, revealing the larval (S-shaped) tunnels underneath.
- Contact a professional. If you feel your ash tree may be infested with EAB, contact a tree care professional, your city parks department, or the MDA at firstname.lastname@example.org or 888-545-6684 (voicemail).
Emerald ash borer larvae kill ash trees by tunneling under the bark and feeding on the part of the tree that moves nutrients up and down the trunk. Minnesota is highly susceptible to the destruction caused by this invasive insect. The state has approximately one billion ash trees, the most of any state in the nation.
The biggest risk of spreading EAB comes from people unknowingly moving firewood or other ash products harboring larvae. There are three easy steps residents can take to keep EAB from spreading:
- Don’t transport firewood. Buy firewood locally from approved vendors and burn it where you buy it;
- Be aware of the quarantine restrictions. If you live in a quarantined county, be aware of the restrictions on movement of products such as ash trees, wood chips, and firewood; and,
- Watch your ash trees for infestation. If you think your ash tree is infested, go to www.mda.state.mn.us/eab-info-homeowners for resources on identifying EAB, how to hire tree care professionals, and insecticide options for protecting your ash tree.
Because the City of Monticello is a river town, we ask that our residents DO NOT use any products that require the “soil-drench” method. Soil-applied insecticides are not as effective as a tree trunk injection and can be harmful to children or pets. Additionally, the “soil-drench” methods can wash away or leach, potentially contaminating water resources.
On Monday, March 28 City Council will be formally declaring the infestation. A representative from the MDA will give an educational presentation about EAB for residents who would like to learn more. Council meetings are open to the public and begin at 6:30 p.m. in the Mississippi Room at Monticello Community Center. Residents can view the meeting live online. Meetings are broadcast live on local cable channel 12 (channel 180 for Charter subscribers). The meetings are also replayed throughout the week. For more information on emerald ash borer, go to www.mda.state.mn.us/eab.