Village of La Grange Park

Village of Roses
Photo from La Grange Park

Emerald Ash Borer

In September of 2011, the Illinois Department of Agriculture confirmed the presence of emerald ash borer in a trap which was located at 28th and Harrison in the Village of La Grange Park.  Because of this confirmation, the Village is now on the "Illinois EAB Confirmed Infested Locations".


ince June 2006, when the emerald ash borer (EAB) was first discovered in Illinois, State and Federal officials have been surveying Illinois’ northeastern landscape to determine the extent of spread of this evasive pest. Initially, the damage was minimal as the detection method results were mostly negative, but as the pest bore in and survey tools became more refined, positive finds have become more prevalent.  Recent and numerous EAB finds underscore the need for communities to be proactive against EAB.


EAB is a small metallic green beetle, 1/2 to 3/8 of an inch long. No bigger than a penny, this elusive and invasive pest lays eggs on the trunks of ash trees in the summer months. In the fall, the eggs hatch and become larvae that bore into the tree, feasting on the tree’s cambium layer, thereby cutting off the tree’s nutrient supply which ultimately causes the tree’s decline. EAB is difficult to detect when it first arrives on a tree.  A tree can host EAB for 3-5 years before symptoms become noticeable to anyone, including the trained eye. Unfortunately, the population of EAB grows exponentially with each passing year. EAB was first discovered in Illinois in June 2006, in the Windings of Ferson Creek subdivision near Lily Lake in Kane County. The Illinois Department of Agriculture has since confirmed EAB infestations in several communities within Kane, Cook, DuPage and LaSalle counties, and has issued a quarantine affecting all or parts of 18 of the northeastern-most counties of the State of Illinois.


Life Cycle

The adult emerald ash borer emerges May - July and the female lays numerous eggs in bark crevices a-d between layers of bark.  The eggs hatch in 7-10 days into larvae which bore into the tree where they chew the inner bark and phloem creating winding galleries as they feed.  This cuts off the flow of water and nutrients in the tree, thereby causing dieback and death.


Signs and Symptoms

The most visible sign of infestation is crown dieback. Branches at the top of the crown will die and more branches will die in subsequent years. As the tree declines, ‘suckers’, or new young branches, will sprout from the base of the tree and on the trunk. The bark may also split vertically and woodpeckers may feed on the beetle leaving visible damage on the bark.  Successful treatments with insecticides are limited but continue to be studied. All ash trees near any new infestation will most likely become infested and die.  Adult beetles emerging from trees will leave a unique “D” shaped exit hole. This is a small 1/8 inch diameter distinctly “D” shaped hole that may appear anywhere on the trunk or upper branches.


Characteristics of ash:

-         Compound leaves made up of seven small, glossy green leaflets (5-9 leaflets).

-         Leaves, twigs and branches grow symetrically in opposite pairs.

-         Bark of mature trees is gray and furrowed, often appearing in a diamond pattern.

-         Some ash trees will produce small canoe paddle-shaped seeds.

-         Seedless ash trees are common.

-         Some ash produce conspicuous hard, brown “flower galls” on their twigs.


Other Stressors to Ash leaves

Ash trees may suffer from a number of insect disease or other problems that can cause similar symptoms.  Native borers also attack ash trees and leave different exit holes. The round or oval holes of native insect borers are not “D” shaped and are usually smaller or larger than those of the EAB.


You Can Help...


Emerald Ash Borer can easily be transported in ash logs. Purchase firewood locally (within county) from a known source. Be sure to use all the firewood in the cold months so that no hidden EAB larvae or adults can survive on logs left through the spring.  There are both state and federal quarantines in place that restrict the movement of ash logs, branches or other material in certain areas. The entire state of Illinois is under a federal quarantine, which restricts the movement of regulated articles across the state line. Additionally, an internal state quarantine is in effect for the 18 northeastern-most counties within the state.


Click herefor more detailed information.


Monitor the health of ash trees. Look for dead and dying branches at the top of the tree’s crown and other EAB signs and symptoms.


Treatment for Emerald Ash Borer

Click here for information regarding treatment for the Emerald Ash Borer.


If You Think You Have Emerald Ash Borer:

If you suspect your tree has EAB, please contact, Brendan McLaughlin, Director of Public Works, Village of La Grange Park at (708) 352-2922.


Village of La Grange Park – Emerald Ash Borer Management Plan

The Village of La Grange Park has put together a management plan.  The plan was put into action in September of 2011 when the Illinois Department of Agriculture confirmed the presence of EAB in a trap.