Trees cut down in Grafton due to emerald ash borer

The Village of Grafton is tackling it's emerald ash borer infestation head-on by cutting down all the Ash trees.

The Department of Public Works has made announcements about the tree demolition through the village website. Residents will not be charged for tree removal or replacement. 

The department's director Amber Thomas says the village plans to replace all the Ash trees with a variety of new trees, to avoid this problem in the future. Thomas explains while some trees may still look healthy it's best to cut them all down. 

"Underneath the bark there could still be some evidence that the bug has gotten in, at some point, and it's going to die," said Thomas. 

By removing all trees, residential areas and cars are saved from the risk of potential falling limbs.

Ben Protzman has worked with the LaRosa Landscaping company in Cedarburg for more than 15 years. He says they haven't planted an Ash tree in nearly 10 years because of the infestation.

Since ash is one of the main trees throughout Ozaukee County, LaRosa has been tasked with trying to save them through chemical treatments.

The chemical treatments are expensive, says Protzman, and must be done more than once. He agrees with Grafton's decision to remove all Ash trees and start over with new trees.

Since the department of public works estimates tree removal for neighborhoods and the local parks to go into 2019, tree removal will save more money than the treatments. 

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