Emerald Ash Borer confirmed in Prairie Village

The scars left by Emerald Ash Borer infestation on the north Prairie Village Tree. Photo provided by Prairie Village Public Works.
The scars left by Emerald Ash Borer infestation on the north Prairie Village Tree. Photo provided by Prairie Village Public Works.

Officials have confirmed a case of Emerald Ash Borer infestation in Prairie Village, Public Works Director Keith Bredehoeft told the City Council on Monday.

Greg VanBooven, a Prairie Village resident and tree board member who operates VanBooven Tree Care, found the infested tree in the backyard of a home on 64th Street, a neighborhood in the northern part of the city where ash trees are prevalent, in mid March. The signs of the infestation were on the trunk of the tree.

“They could see a live larvae in there,” Bredehoeft said.

It’s unclear how long the tree had been infected, but typically the borers begin their infestations in the upper reaches of a tree and move their way down to the trunk over the course of a couple years.

Roeland Park had the first confirmed Emerald Ash Borer case in northeast Johnson County last year when the Kansas Department of Agriculture caught three adults in a trap there in June.

Bredehoeft told the city council that the public works was putting together a proposal for removing and treating ash trees in the city that they would present in the coming weeks. The goal would be to be able to treat ash trees that are good candidates for preservation starting in June, he said.