The Emerald Ash Borer may have yet to arrive in northeast Johnson County, but it’s already having an impact on the area’s treescape.
Crews have been removing dozens of Ash trees in Mission Hills as part of that city’s efforts to prepare for an Emerald Ash Borer infestation. Assistant City Administrator Jennifer Lee said a total of 168 trees were removed by the end of last week with stump grinding continuing into this week.
The city sent letters to homeowners with Ash trees in the city right-of-way identified for removal, alerting them to the coming tree removal crews and also letting them know which kind of tree the city hoped to plant as a replacement. The city offered each homeowner a recommended replacement tree and two alternatives from a list of approved species.
Replantings will begin in May or early June, with another batch scheduled for early fall. Lee said the city plans to plant 273 trees to replace the 168 it has removed.
“They won’t be in the exact same spot at the trees that were removed, but they will be pretty close,” she said. “We are trying to diversify the city’s canopy, and Ash removals actually provide a good opportunity to do that.”