As the work begins to replant Iowa's ash trees due to destruction by the Emerald Ash Borer, or EAB, the Chair of the Horticulture Department at Iowa State University Jeff Iles says we need to think about maintaining trees over the long term. Iles says as municipalities begin the task of replacing trees, they need to budget for ongoing maintenance.
And EAB isn't the only good reason to replant. It may also be needed as tree populations age. Iles says individuals and volunteers can make a big difference in this effort, as most city budgets are tight.
Iles says diversity is also a concern, and a tree inventory is a good place to start so that you're not planting too many of one kind of tree. He says Autumn Blaze Maple is a good example of a tree that's been over-planted across the state. The concern is what will happen in the future if a pest or disease emerges that impacts the species. So, consider slow-growing, long-lived tree species like Oak.
In this edition of horticulture day on Talk of Iowa, host Charity Nebbe talks with Iles and ISU Associate Professor of Horticulture, Cindy Haynes about ongoing tree care and maintenance. They also answer listener questions.