Eek! Is it here?

The Emerald Ash Borer is in Fairfax County.  It’s a tree-killer, as bad as the chestnut blight that pretty much wiped out the most valuable tree in our Virginia forests a century ago.

The borer has already killed the ash trees in one neighborhood in Herndon.  It’s spread to Springfield, too.

I expect some bureaucracy – Fairfax County, the State of Virginia, or the US Department of Agriculture – to eradicate all ash trees within a mile of the known infestations, and to impose a quarantine on shipping tree debris out of Fairfax County.  Guess we won’t be buying any mulch or firewood generated from Fairfax County land-clearing projects for this coming winter.

If the quarantine works, all the Emerald Ash Borer larvae will be destroyed this winter.  That’s a mighty optimistic dream, but maybe we’ll get lucky.

However, Fairfax ships its woody debris to a chipping/composting facility on Balls Ford Road near Gainesville, and the infestation is probably at least 2 years old.  The odds of the infestation spreading to our piece of the planet are very high.

I’m starting to look closely at the ash tree next to my house… and it’s looking a mite poorly lately.


2 comments so far

  1. Parker on

    I wonder what specific ashes it’s attacking around here. We have the Green Ash I know but are there others.

  2. khosen on

    We also have the white ash, and probably some non-native species that have been planted in yards.

    According to the Virginia Forestry Dept., VDACS is expected to issue a quarantine preventing any ash materials from leaving Fairfax County… Hopefully in time to prevent a transfer to Prince William. More information is online here

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