April 5, 2011
Strongsville has received a $26,250 grant from the state to replace ash trees killed or damaged by Emerald Ash Borer. Ash trees will be removed and replaced with Blackgum and Princeton Elm trees.
Strongsville sought a $35,000 matching grant from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources to replace infested ash trees on three streets, but ODNR awarded 75 percent of that figure in an effort to spread the grants among all 43 of the Ohio communities that applied for them.
Emerald Ash Borers, first spotted in Ohio in 2003, lay their eggs in crevices on Ash tree bark. When the larvae hatch, they burrow under the bark and feed on the tree cambium from fall to spring. The tunneling destroys the tree's vascular system, eventually leading to the death of the Ash tree.
There are about 750 Ash trees planted along the streets and in the parks in Strongsville. About 125 of the Ash trees will be removed and replaced this year.
The Ohio Department of Agriculture has placed Cuyahoga County in a firewood quarantine zone, and the Metroparks has outlawed moving firewood anywhere within the parks at any time. Also, firewood, tree trimmings and other tree debris is not allowed to be dumped in the Cleveland Metroparks.
Signs of Emerald Ash Borer infestation are an increase in woodpecker activity; dead or sparse tree branches near the top of the Ash tree; branches suddenly growing from the lower trunk or base of the Ash tree; and D-shaped exit holes in the trunk of the Ash tree.