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updated: 3/26/2013 9:22 AM

Mundelein board adopts emerald ash borer plan

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  • An emerald ash borer sits on a suburban ash tree. Mundelein is the latest suburb to develop a plan to remove infected trees.

      An emerald ash borer sits on a suburban ash tree. Mundelein is the latest suburb to develop a plan to remove infected trees.
    Rick West/ Daily Herald File Photo

 
 

You can count Mundelein among the suburbs that have given up the fight against the emerald ash borer.

The village board on Monday approved a plan to identify and remove ash trees infested by the destructive insect, which first was detected in Mundelein in December 2011.

The plan divides the village into eight work zones. Each year, the village-owned trees in one zone will be inspected for evidence of infestation.

If signs are found in a tree, village crews will expand the search within a one-mile radius to determine the extent of the infestation.

Trees that are dead or in poor health will be removed.

Village crews traditionally don't remove trees on private property. If a privately owned tree is deemed a hazard or a nuisance because of infestation, the building department will be notified.

More than 1,900 ash trees stand on village-owned parkways in Mundelein. That's about one-third of the entire tree canopy in the village.

Officials hope to replace any removed ash trees within 18 months. Different species of trees will be planted, according to the plan.

The new trees won't necessarily be planted in the same spot as the old trees, officials said.

The project will be done over time instead of all at once to spread out the estimated $1.4 million cost, officials said.

The metallic green beetle has eaten its way through countless trees in the Chicago area since first emerging in Illinois in 2006.

The most visible signs of infestation are dead branches or leaf loss from the top to the bottom of trees. As the tree declines, new branches will sprout from the base and trunk of the tree, too.

Debris from woodpeckers at the base of an ash tree is another sign.

The board approved the plan without opposition. Information about the ash borer and the plan can be found at the village's website, mundelein.org.

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