Hamilton Conducts First-Ever Curbside Tree Inventory to Help Address Invasive Insects that Kill Ash Trees
Since 2002, the Emerald
Ash Borer – a beetle native to Asia – has killed tens of millions of ash trees
across the United States and Canada according to the New Jersey State
Department of Agriculture.
Thanks to a State
Community Forestry grant, Hamilton Township will conduct its first-ever
comprehensive inventory of its curbside trees to help identify the severity of
this issue across town, as well as to provide useful data for future needs.
Since 2017, Hamilton’s
Planning Division and its Shade Tree Advisory Commission began investigating
grant opportunities to fund efforts to address the issue. It led Hamilton to securing a $10,000
Community Stewardship Incentive Program grant through the New Jersey Department
of Environmental Protection.
Beginning this month, a
State licensed tree expert, Davey Resource Group, will conduct the inventory of
trees along Township right-of-way areas (between curbs and sidewalks). Field
work for the inventory is expected to take approximately three weeks to be
completed. While residents can expect to see Davey Resource Group personnel
inspecting curbside trees, the inspectors will not be inspecting trees beyond the sidewalk.
Unfortunately, by the time
a tree exhibits physical signs from Emerald ash borer larvae, the tree will
typically remain alive for just a few more years. However, with data from the
inventory, Hamilton will seek to replace curbside trees that will succumb to
the Emerald Ash Borer from dedicated tree replacement funds.
some of the recent severe storms that impacted our community and may have
damaged trees, this inventory will assist in identifying dead or decaying
curbside trees, enabling proactive remedial action.
“As a long-standing Tree
City USA recipient, this is just another effort that illustrates our
community’s concern for our local environment and our curbside shade trees,”
says Mayor Kelly Yaede.
Last year, Hamilton celebrated
its 13th consecutive Tree City USA Award (for the year of
2018). The Tree City USA program, which
is administered by the Arbor Day Foundation in partnership with the US
Department of Agriculture’s Forest Service, the Urban and Community Forestry Program
and the National Association of State Foresters, recognizes communities that
demonstrate a commitment to urban forest management efforts.
“Beyond helping to address
any issues resulting from the Emerald Ash Borer, this effort will provide an
inventory of all of our hometown’s curbside trees, which will be useful for the
planning of future tree planting projects,” says Mayor Yaede.
Residents can learn more
about Hamilton’s Shade Tree Commission by visiting: HamiltonNJ.com/ShadeTree