Forest Service educates public on emerald ash borer

Posted By: Nicole Cousins

The Nebraska Forest Service is helping people prepare for the inevitable emerald ash borer infestation in the state.

They showed people what they can do to spot, prepare for and treat an infestation in a seminar on Wednesday.

“This is a concern to Nebraskans and anyone with ash trees because this is a very aggressive insect,” forest health specialist Laurie Stepanek said. “This will likely wipe out most of our ash trees in an amount of time.”

The beetle has already been found in Douglas and Cass counties in Nebraska, but what officials call the treatment consideration zone spreads into Lancaster and Saunders counties…including Lincoln.

They say even though the beetle hasn’t been found in either place yet, tree owners should start treating healthy ash trees soon.

“It’s hard to determine when we are going to find emerald ash borer here in Lincoln or Lancaster county or Saunders county or any others,” Stepanek said. “It’s hard to know when it will show up where it will show up.”

If you think your ash tree might be infected, reach out to your county extension educator immediately.

There are treatments for infected ash trees as well as preventative treatments for ones that are uninfected.

There will be two more informational seminars in August.

One will  be the 18th from 7-9 p.m. at Saunders County Nebraska Extension in Ithaca. The other will be back at the Lancaster Extension Education Center in Lincoln from 9-11 a.m. on August 27th.