EAB Response Options for Private Property

Although replacing the village-owned trees infested with EAB will take priority, the village will continue its program of planting trees where empty spaces in parkways permit, as well as continue to plant replacements of trees that die for other reasons, as funds permit.

Signs of an Infestation
All property owners (commercial, residential and homeowner associations) should be aware and remain vigilant in inspecting their private ash trees for the following signs of EAB infestation.
  • Canopy Dieback - Thinning of the canopy throughout, which may start from the tips of the tree (Initial stages may be difficult to see from the ground)
  • Sprouts growing from roots and trunk
  • Splitting bark
  • Serpentine galleries viewed if bark is removed
  • Very small D-shaped exit holes which are difficult to see
  • Increased woodpecker activity/damage
For assistance on how to identify emerald ash borer, please check online.

Response Options
If your private property tree is infested with EAB, owners can consider the following Response Options.

Tree Removal / Replanting
Consider whether ash trees on your property are worth protecting. Trees enhance a property's value, but it may be more cost effective to replace a small or struggling ash tree than to pay the cost of ongoing treatments. In addition, trees in poor or declining health are not likely to respond well to insecticide treatments.

Tree removal requires retaining an EAB-compliant vendor in your area who knows how to properly handle and destroy the ash wood in order to minimize the spread of EAB. You can view EAB-compliant vendors online (click on the county column to sort by county).  You may also face fines from the city. Please read below about Notice of Violations below.

Treatment requires a long-term commitment. Once EAB arrives, it will remain a constant threat to ash trees for many years to come. It is likely that protective treatments will be needed for the rest of the tree's life. Optimal timing for most treatment methods is mid-April through June.

Many effective products are best administered by professionals. Contact a local arborist or tree-care professional for diagnosis and treatment. Check to be sure that the professional is licensed in Illinois as a commercial pesticide applicator for Category E: Turf and Ornamentals. Read online about insecticide management options (PDF).

There are homeowner treatment options for small ash trees, though these require careful application to avoid unintended environmental impacts. You can find a do-it-yourself insecticide management options (PDF) for homeowners online.

Doing Nothing
To do nothing is not an advisable option. If your tree is dying, the branches will become weak and will eventually fall in severe storms or just naturally over time. There is a safety and financial liability onus on you as a tree owner that could become expensive should disaster strike. All ash tree owners have a responsibility to their neighbors and community to remove or treat their infested ash trees to minimize the spread of EAB.

Notice of Violation
Once a tree is dead or dying and a hazard to people / property, the village Forestry Division will mail a Notice of Violation, which requires that the tree be removed within 10 days of receipt of the letter. Failure to comply will cause the village to remove the tree and invoice the homeowner for all related expenses.

50/50 Tree Program
Residents may be eligible to participate in the village’s 50/50 Tree Program, which allocates funds for trees, including planting, at a 50/50 cost sharing with the village. This successful program was initiated in 1982. The program application and tree selections will appear on the web and Village Almanac in October. The trees will be planted the following spring and are available for residential front yards. Business and commercial property owners wishing to participate should contact Jim Johnson, Urban Forester at 630-671-5800 prior to submitting an application.