When Kathy Daniel looks around Lake Zurich, she takes note of the effects of Emerald ash Borer.
One area hit hard by the beetle is Pheasant Ridge, which looks “atrocious,” the Lake Zurich resident told village trustees this week.
“I think leaving thousands of trees for dead will leave a bad impression on visitors and residents,” Daniel said.
She is concerned about the pace of the removal of the trees and asked the board to provide funding for removal of ash trees with EAB. The disease has been around for a while but it has arrived in Lake Zurich with full force, she said.
EAB first appeared in the village in March 2011 and the Illinois Department of Agriculture confirmed it was found in several trees. The infestation has moved quickly, affecting about 50 percent of the 3,000 ash trees on village property, said Scott Garrison, chairman of the Lake Zurich Tree Committee and a certified arborist.
A few telltale EAB signs are dying branches at the head of the crown, vertical splits in the bark and woodpecker damage, he said. There are also holes in the trees as the adult beetles emerge, he said.
Losing mature ash trees affects the environment, storm water mitigation and the quality of life, Garrison said.
Lake Zurich has 3,000 ash trees, 38 percent of its parkway trees. There is no estimate of how many ash trees are located on private property, he said. “We can only guess it will have a devastating impact,” he said.
Currently, LZ’s Public Works crews take down dead trees to curb costs but it is becoming overwhelming, he said.
In 2011, the department removed 44 trees. Last year, 61 trees were removed, he said. This year, 213 trees have been removed, Garrison said.
“As can see by numbers, we are well into the death curve,” he said.
All of the village’s parkway trees will be dead within three years, Garrison estimated.
While treatment is possible, it does not cure the, he said. Garrison, like Daniel, wants to see the village increase funds to deal with EAB.