Be proactive in protecting your ash trees

I’ve known that the emerald ash borer was in the New Milford area, but had procrastinated on getting quotes to treat my tree. I did know it would cost $2,000 to have it removed. Now that our beautiful, old (approximately 125 years) tree is suddenly dying, I learn that the treatment for a tree this size runs about $360 and lasts for three years.

The insects are busy killing trees in New Milford — soon, they’ll be in Rockford. Many homes will lose their shade trees, as will our parks. After the Dutch Elm disease took out so many of our lovely trees in the Forest City, ash trees were planted to replace them. We are now facing a similar crisis.

If you have ash trees that you want to keep, or can’t afford to cut a big one down, I urge you to learn from my lesson and start your treatments now before it is too late. I am told that if treated early, they will certainly live; but if you wait until 20 percent of the tree is affected (they always start at the top), then there is only a 50 percent chance you can save the tree.

Allen Penticoff

New Milford, Ill.

From the Dec. 4-10, 2013, issue

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