Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) is a beautiful jewel beetle from Asia that eats the layer of highly conductive tissue under the bark of ash trees to the extent of causing the rapid decline and death of the tree. Unlike in its native country, it has no natural controls in Canada.
It is expected that this pest will kill the majority of ash trees in Montreal within 10 years.
Only one EAB treatment is available in Canada: the use of an injected systemic insecticide called TreeAzin.
Cost of treatment
The cost of this treatment varies based on the diameter at breast height, or dbh (between 5 and 7$ per cm of dbh). It can therefore range from 200$ to more than 1000$ for very large trees. Some municipalities and boroughs currently offer funding programs to cover part of the costs.
Frequency of treatment
The frequency of the injections has been changed from every two years to every year. This expense is likely to continue as long as you want to keep the tree alive, or until the beetle population collapses. Once you stop treatments, the risk of reinfestation will remain. Please note that it is unlikely that municipalities and boroughs will continue subsidizing these treatments indefinitely.
The long-term effectiveness of the treatment is questionable. Experts say that it may slow the destruction of the ash population, but the end result will be the same. We have personally witnessed the death of many ash trees that had been treated for EAB a year or two earlier.
Royal Tree Service treatment policy
Due to the apparent long-term ineffectiveness of TreeAzin, Royal Tree Service does not offer the treatment. There are other companies who still do. We do our best to offer our clients clarity and certainty.
Removal of ash trees
Ultimately, you will likely have to remove your ash trees. The best option is to get your ash trees inventoried by Royal Tree Service and to develop a strategy. Many homeowners and businesses have numerous trees, which can translate into days or weeks of work. We can define the cost so you can build a budget.
We expect an exponential increase in removals over the next few years, and judging by Ontario’s struggles with EAB, there will be waiting lists of many months to get trees removed in the coming years. The longer a tree stands dead, the more difficult it is to remove due to its increasing brittleness as it dries out.
Royal Tree Service has been preparing for the arrival of EAB for 8 years. We are equipped with cranes, skid steers, large capacity chippers and a large team of skilled arborists. We operate with oversight and training, and have people dedicated to managing the logistics of this complex work.
ASH TREE TREATMENT / REMOVAL SUBSIDIES BY CITY AND BOROUGH - As of February 2018
CITY / BOROUGH
EAB TREATMENTS W/TREEAZIN
$3.80 per cm of DBH
$25 per tree, valid for 3 months
50% compensation for the first two trees, maximum $250 per tree
For ash trees of 25 cm dbh and more: 50% per tree, maximum $125 per tree
50% of cost, maximum $1,500
For ash tress of 25 cm dbh and more: 50% per tree, maximum of $200 per tree