Reminder to treat trees for Emerald Ash Borer


SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) – 40 percent of the trees in Sioux Falls are ash trees.

There’s a good chance you have one in your yard. There’s also a good chance you haven’t done anything to protect them. If you want to keep them alive, we have an important reminder. Make sure to get them treated.

Last year, the emerald ash borer was discovered in northern Sioux Falls. Since then, the insects have moved south.

Scott Petersen has lived in the Riverview Heights neighborhood for nearly 30 years. The trees on his property are an important part of his yard, that’s why today he’s getting them treated.

“It makes me very sad to have to contemplate having these two beautiful trees in my front yard, if they would disappear, and have to be cut down, so I figure the treatment of this was a no brainer because it maintains the beauty, blocks the west sun in the afternoon,” homeowner, Scott Petersen said.

There are more than 85,000 ash trees in Sioux Falls. John Yale with First Dakota Horticulture says only about 8,000 have been treated.

“We’ve got a small percentage of the ash trees treated and in the next ten years we expect to lose any untreated ash trees,” First Dakota Horticulture, John Yale said.

That’s why Yale says it’s a good idea for homeowners to start getting their trees treated sooner rather than later. You will then need to continue getting your trees treated every two years.

“We’re not planting ash trees anymore, so as long as you continue to treat your tree, you’ll be able to treat your tree, a protected tree is not going to be killed by the emerald ash borer, however, we’re always going to have the ash borer here, it’s never going to go away,” Yale said.

Making this a worthwhile investment for homeowners like Petersen.

“When you think about how our trees have been growing for 40 to 50 years and to start over again, costs money and then have to wait years for them to really look like something,” Petersen said.

You can check the city’s website to find certified arborists to treat you trees.

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