Insect Inoculation

(Ash tree grove in Rye Town Park)

FRTP is working with Bartlett Tree Experts, the group’s arborists, to inoculate the park’s Ash trees against invasion from this beetle.  The project is being done in stages.

50 million ash trees in the U.S. have been destroyed since the arrival of the Emerald Ash Borer, first discovered in Michigan in 2002.  The EAB is native to Asia and likely brought to the United States in wooden shipping pallets.  The tiny iridescent emerald green beetle will destroy even the tallest, most majestic white, black or blue ash within 2 – 4 years of infestation, unless individual trees are treated.  

In areas with a high density of host plants, the beetle spreads rapidly. Westchester County and New York City have some of the heaviest concentrations of ash trees in New York State, ranging from 13 to 20% of canopy coverage, making it especially important for homeowners to proactively have ash trees evaluated for infestation.  

Female adult beetles, up to one-half inch in length, can lay more than 90 eggs in a tree’s bark. Larvae feed under the bark on cambial tissue, disrupting the tree’s ability to transport water and nutrients.  Adult beetles emerge in late spring and early summer, but by this time, larval populations have already done extensive damage.  

Symptoms of EAB infestation are notches on the margins of the leaves, bark splitting, serpentine galleries, “D” shaped exit holes, and increased woodpecker activity