The Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) has already taken a toll in northeast Johnson County since its presence was confirmed here in June. Some cities have started executing plans to remove ash trees in the public right-of-way or on city property. Now Roeland Park is the latest to approve ash tree removal before the trees die from the infestation.
The presence of the destructive EAB was discovered in a trap in R Park in June. Ironically, nearly all of Roeland Park’s ash trees that are on city property are located in R Park. Two sides of the park are extensively lined with ash trees. This week the city council approved a contract to remove 43 of the ash trees in the park.
Other cities, including Prairie Village, have begun grading trees for health and removing ash trees that are the city’s responsibility. The collection of trees in R Park likely represents the most concentrated group of public trees to be taken down.
In conjunction with the construction of the walking trail, the city has received grant money to plant new trees in the park along the trail.
The EAB, which has destroyed ash stands across the country, was first confirmed in Johnson County in July 2013 when it was found in a trap at the Johnson County landfill.