How to Dispose of Dead Ash Trees (Even If They Have EAB)

How to Dispose of Dead Ash Trees (Even If They Have EAB)

If your ash tree wasn’t a candidate for EAB treatment, you likely had to remove it to keep your home safe.

You know removing your EAB-infested ash tree was for the best. But, it’s still incredibly sad to see a tree you’ve had for years or even decades suddenly vanish.

Then, you’re left with a pile of ash wood that used to be your tree. What should you do with it? Read on to learn how to safely dispose of dead ash trees that had EAB.

What to Do with Dead Ash Trees?

Do emerald ash borers live in dead wood?

If borers were in the tree when you had it removed, there’s a good chance they’re still there.

So, assume EAB is in dead wood. Don’t transport it farther than 50 miles from where it was cut because the emerald ash borers could infest a whole new area. Yikes.

Would you recommend burning ash borer wood?

Go for it! You can safely burn wood from trees infested by EAB. Just be sure to use it at the location where the trees were removed. And again, don’t take it any farther than 50 miles from that site. If you transport the firewood further, you risk spreading EAB.

Here’s other ideas of what you can do with dead ash trees–even if they had EAB.

  • Presto! Be Gone. If you hired a certified tree company to remove your ash trees infested with EAB, they can safely dispose of the wood you don’t want. It’s that easy.

  • Cheap and Easy Mulch. Or have the company who removed your ash trees turn the wood into mulch. Now, those trees can nourish the other plants in your yard. Ah, the circle of life!

  • Make a Fire. As we mentioned above, it is safe to burn ash wood that has EAB.

  • Stop and Drop. Search online or contact your municipality to see if there’s an EAB-compliant site nearby, where you can leave the infested ash wood. Or your municipality may want it.

  • Recycle. Find a nearby recycling center for your old ash tree. Mention your trees had EAB.

  • Transform to Lumber. Emerald ash borers don’t damage the interior of ash trees at all. So, if the tree is at least 12 inches wide and 6 feet long, turn it into lumber for your own use or sell it.

  • Go Wild! Have a creative mind? Turn the old ash wood into art or a craft project.

  • Keep It Close. We can’t say this enough! Keep the infested ash wood as close to its original location as possible. And do not move it farther than 50 miles from there. There are quarantines set up by local governments and the USDA to prevent spreading EAB any farther.

Click here to learn more about the damage emerald ash borers have done.

  • The Tree Doctor August 28, 2018 > You may find someone with a portable mill to saw the best logs for lumber. Ash does make for good flooring and furniture. There are traveling displays around the country showing how woodworkers are making use of the wood from EAB killed trees. As far as removing the root systems, clearing woodlots/old farmsteads in the area where I grew up (northern Iowa) usually involved bulldozers blading out the stumps after the trees were cut and piled. Contacting one of the logging companies in Wisconsin may be of benefit. You are certainly not the only woodlot owner who will have the same issue. Hopefully, this helps. Best of luck to you, Chuck.
  • Chuck Boyd August 25, 2018 >We have 65 acres of Ash we planted 17 years ago. The trees are 14' to 25' tall & 2" to 4" in diameter. The Emerald Ash Borer has infested them this summer. Would anyone know of any valued use for infested trees of the size we have. We are enrolled in the Managed Forest Lands (MFL) program & have consulted our local Forester. The Forester has told us there are no programs currently available to help land owners with this crop damage. We are trying to learn if there is a machine or method to remove the tree roots (stumps) so as we can return the land to conventional farming. If anyone would have information that would help us we would appreciate learning of it. Wisconsin Farmer Chuck 920-375-0358.
  • Gary Nickel January 28, 2018 >Should I remove bark on ash trees cut in winter to kill eab?
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