Control Spread of Emerald Ash Borer in New Jersey: Remove Ash Trees in Winter

As of August 2016, emerald ash borer has been found in New Jersey in Bergen, Burlington, Essex, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth and Somerset counties.

According to the NJ Department of Agriculture, all ash trees in NJ should be considered at high risk for EAB.

Even if Emerald Ash Borer has not yet been detected in your area, all ash trees are considered to be at high risk of EAB infestation within the next few years.

Areas With Emerald Ash Borer Infestations in New Jersey as of August 2016

Map of emerald ash borer infestation in New Jersey August 2016


What You Can Do To Control EAB in New Jersey

Doing nothing is NOT an option.

Over 99% of untreated ash trees in the landscape (e.g., trees planted in yards or near your home) will eventually become infested (probably within the next few years) and die from EAB.

Treatment is possible during spring and summer. See our Emerald Ash Borer Treatment page for details on how, when and whether or not your trees are a good candidate for treatment.

The only other option is to cut down your infested ash trees (or preemptively remove ash trees on your property before they become infected).

Removal & Recycling Ash Trees

Below are the recommendations released in August 2016 by the NJ Emerald Ash Borer Task Force.

  • Any ash trees determined to be a high safety risk should be removed immediately. These are dead or dying trees that could fall or break apart. They should be cut down as soon as possible (at any time of year).
  • Any actively infested ash trees should be cut down and chipped as soon as possible and then left on site (in the municipality you live in). Do not move wood chips from infected trees out of your local area. Ideally, keep the chips and/or wood on your own property.
  • For all other ash trees, it’s best to cut down your trees in the fall and winter. The wood must be chipped or de-barked and left on site before new emerald ash borers emerge in late April.
  • Use the wood from infected trees as completely and as locally as possible. For example, use it as firewood or wood chips. Be as creative as possible, and keep ash wood local!

Always consult with a Certified (Licensed) Tree Expert or Approved Consulting Forester before deciding to take down a tree. It’s a dangerous job that can easily go wrong when not done by a professional.

Dead or dying ash trees that have been infested with emerald ash borer are particularly dangerous as the tunnels made by the insects destabilize the tree and can cause it to fail in unexpected ways. Please … do not try to do this yourself!

If you have ash trees on your property that need to be removed, please give us a call at 908-309-6611 to set up an appointment for a free inspection and quote.

We highly recommend removing trees during the winter – it’s easier to do without all the leaves on the tree and with the ground frozen or snow-covered, there’s less chance of damage to your lawn.

Bill Grundmann

Bill is the owner of Organic Plant Care, LLC. He takes an integrated approach to tree care, focusing not only on the trees themselves but also on the surrounding environment, managing tree health from the "ground up" - healthy soil equals healthy plants. Bill is a New Jersey Licensed Tree Expert and NJ Approved Forester with over 35 years of experience in the tree care industry.