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Town to remove 70 ash trees in 2015

June 17, 2015   ·   0 Comments

The Town of Orangeville will remove about 70 ash trees this year in an attempt to curb the impact of the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) and alleviate potential safety concerns. This is the second year of Orangeville’s multi-year action plan to address the impact of Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), an invasive insect.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) first detected the EAB in Erindale Park in the spring of 2013. During a tree inventory later in the year, the Town also discovered the insect in ash trees on Madison Avenue. Consultant Silv-Econ, which prepared the Town’s Boulevard Tree Inventory and Analysis, noted that in the coming five to 10 years the EAB is expected to have severely affected and/or killed Orangeville’s ash trees.

Limbing in the areas of the Brown’s Farm and Westdale/Westmorland in 2014 further determined that EAB has spread throughout the urban forest. Orangeville Council approved a 10-year plan in 2014 to remove and replace all ash trees on municipal boulevards and in municipal parks.

The EAB implementation plan targets three areas for tree removal in 2015:

• arkview Drive area, a zone which is within a radius of two kilometres from the first identified EAB infestation at Erindale Park. Many of these trees are also of a medium DBH (diameter breast height) size, thus presenting a concern based on tree size.  Ash trees in this area range in size of 29 cm to 48 cm in diameter. A total of 27 trees are proposed to be removed from this area.

•  total of 25 trees with larger diameters and poor canopy conditions are slated for removal this year in the Elm Street and Westdale Avenue area . These trees have a high potential for causing damage should failure occur, i.e. damage to buildings, infrastructure and overhead utility lines.

•  third area considered for the 2015 program is the Brown’s Farm subdivision i.e., Diane Drive, Manor Crescent.  A total of 12 trees are in this zone.

•  total of four trees will also be removed from municipal parks in 2015 – three from Myr Morrow Park and one from Harvey Curry Park.

In assessing the risk of the ash trees in Orangeville and determining priorities for removal, the structural integrity of the tree and a site risk rating are considered.

The 2015 EAB program will continue to include limbing to further identify infected areas. The information will be used to set priorities and ash tree removal plans in subsequent years of the EAB program.

With respect to ash trees located on conservation land owned by the Town, only trees that pose a risk to private or public infrastructure will be included in the plan. They will be removed as required. Residents are responsible for affected trees located on their own property.

The ash trees will be replaced with a variety of species best suited to the site conditions, and trees that will not impact utilities. Such species will include locust, oak, hackberry, service berry, elm, and ivory silk lilac. “There may be other species and we will be soliciting input from residents with respect to a species for their boulevard area,” said John Lackey, Manager of Operations and Development.

         

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