Cedar Valley Arboretum & Botanic Gardens

What A Bore

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If you’ve read any articles of mine before, you know my feelings on entomology and all things creepy-crawly.  One of my least favorite classes at Iowa State!  But necessary to know, unfortunately, if you want to be successful in the garden.

I had a question about Emerald Ash Borers last week and thought I’d share a bit of information with you on this pesky beetle.  Emerald Ash Borer, Agrilus planipennis, is a wood-boring beetle found destroying our Ash (Fraxinus)* tree population throughout the Midwest.  The beetle was first discovered in Detroit, Michigan in 2002 and was imported to the U.S. from wooden shipping crates from China.  Since then it has been discovered in the eastern and midwestern states, as well as Canada.

Adult Emerald Ash Borers eat on Ash leaves, and cause little harm.  The immature stage (called larva), however, feed on the tissue** under the bark that causes severe damage.  Once a tree has been infected by Eastern Ash Borer, it will likely die in 2-4 years.

This beetle can only fly a few miles on its own, so it is mainly transported inadvertently by humans who move infested firewood, Ash nursery stock or other Ash by-products.

Thankfully, we have not seen Emerald Ash Borer at The Arboretum, so I do not have any photos to show you.  If you would like to learn more (and see photos) of this beetle, please visit http://www.emeraldashborer.info/identifyeab.cfm.  And for a recent newspaper article on Emerald Ash Borer and Iowa, please visit http://www.emeraldashborer.info/identifyeab.cfm.

See you in the gardens.


*For more information on identifying Ash trees in the landscape, please visit http://www.anr.msu.edu/robertsd/ash/ashtree_id.html.

**Tissue under the bark consists of xylem and phloem.  Xylem helps provide structural support and conducts water and nutrients upward from the roots.  Phloem moves in the opposite direction, and conducts food from the leaves to other parts of the plant.




Written by cedarvalleyarboretum

April 19, 2009 at 4:05 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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