NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) are unfortunately no stranger to Tennessee, as the invasive species has spread to ash trees in more than 60 counties including several here in Middle Tennessee.

In an effort to manage the outbreak, Metro’s Tree Advisory Commission has offered up a management plan that anyone can use for their own properties.

emerald ash borer, sinuous carvings dug by the larvae on a tree
(Adobe Stock Image)

EAB is a green pest that kills the ash tree when it creates tunnels eating through the tree’s nutrients, said the Tennessee Department of Agriculture. It could take several years after an infection before a tree dies.

If caught early enough, there are things that can be done to treat and protect ash trees.

One of the first signs of EAB, according to the Ag department, is the canopy dieback of the upper branches.

The Tree Advisory Commission said spring is an ideal time to decide on a management plan that would include treating your tree, letting it die, or removing it.

If a tree is already infested, insecticides can still be used as injection treatments. However, it’s suggested that it be applied professionally every two years. Soil drenches and bark sprays can be applied by a homeowner.

Insecticides can also be applied before an infestation to help build up resistance, according to the commission.

If a damaged tree is out in the woods or in an area where it won’t block anything if it falls, then they suggest you let it die naturally and decompose.

Lastly, it’s recommended you remove a tree before it dies if there’s a safety concern involved.

Meanwhile, Metro said it is doing inventory on ash trees in parks and public rights-of-way. Trees that have a blue dot on them are set to be removed.

For more information on how to manage EAB you can click on this link or call (615) 862-5000.