Do You Have a Maintenance and Care Plan for Your Urban Forest?

It’s finally springtime in Minneapolis, Minnesota. While we may get a few more snow squalls, at Urban Tree & Landscape, our fingers are crossed that the frigid days are behind us. Maple trees are starting to produce sap for maple sugaring, and it’s possible to see the start of buds on the neighborhood trees.

With greener days ahead of us, it’s time to start thinking about your urban forest. Have the trees on your property survived the winter? Bitter cold, ice storms, and very dry air can all wreak havoc on your trees. From cracking branches and trunks to winterburn from dry air, your urban forest may need a little help this spring.

A maintenance and care plan for the trees on your property can help them recover from the winter and encourage healthy growth through the warmer months. Here are the four elements of a tree maintenance plan with Urban Tree & Landscape.

Full Evaluation of Your Trees

Any maintenance and care plan starts with a full evaluation of every tree on your property. We look for diseased and weak branches, unstable growth patterns, and whether the trees allow clearance for walkways, driveways, power lines, and your home’s roof. We’ll also note the various species and estimated ages of your trees to ensure each specimen has the opportunity to grow to its full potential.

Once we’ve completed our full evaluation, we’ll work with you to take care of any urgent pruning or tree removal needs. Then, we’ll put together a maintenance plan that will include pruning, disease control, and fertilization.

Tree Pruning for Urban and Suburban Trees

Most tree maintenance plans include annual or seasonal tree pruning, depending on the species of the trees in your urban forest. Urban Tree & Landscape may also recommend more frequent pruning to correct an unstable growth pattern or overgrown tree canopy, especially for young trees.

Pruning keeps your trees healthy as they grow. Pruning and trimming also helps keep your property safely free of broken branches and other hazards.

Tree Disease and Pest Control

Trees are living organisms that can become diseased or infested with pests. Both can threaten the life of an otherwise healthy tree. Many tree diseases are fungal or bacterial. Insects such as Emerald Ash Borer can also cause severe damage to ash trees.

We often uncover disease and pests during our full evaluations. Our maintenance plan for your urban forest will include steps to remedy any present disease or pests or preventative measures to make sure they don’t show up in the future.

Tree Fertilization

Trees in a natural forest setting thrive on the rich, organic soil their environment provides. Fallen leaves and downed trees are left to break down and enrich the soil. But urban and suburban trees compete for nutrients with lawns and gardens. Most homeowners are unwilling to leave leaves and other decaying plant matter to collect under the trees in their yards.

This is why our maintenance plans include periodic tree fertilization. Adding nutrients back into the soil under your tree will help it stay healthy for years to come.

Ready for spring? Urban Tree & Landscape is, too! Give us a call today to schedule your tree evaluation and get started on your tree maintenance plan.

Why Winter is the Best Time for Many Types of Tree Care

With the fresh blanket of snow much of Minnesota just received, it’s likely that the last thing on your mind is tree care. But winter is actually the best time for many types of tree care, including disease control and pruning. Here’s Urban Tree & Landscape’s guide to winter tree care.
Oak and Elm Tree Disease Control in Winter

Winter is the best time to prune oak and elm trees. The insects and fungi that cause oak wilt and Dutch elm disease are dormant. If you have any oak or elm trees that need pruning, now is the time. Warmer weather just around the corner, reawakening insects and fungi. If you wait too long, you’ll be stuck waiting until fall of 2018.

Tree Pruning and Removal in Winter

Winter is a great time to prune or remove trees that are in sensitive landscapes, such as turf grass. In the summer, we need to lay down plywood to prevent our equipment from damaging your yard. When the ground is frozen, we can access your tree without damaging your lawn. We don’t need to put down plywood, skipping a step and saving you money.

Pruning Lakeshore Trees in Winter

Sometimes trees located along a lake must come down. If there is enough ice to let us use the lake as a work zone, the savings to you the client can be substantial. This window of opportunity doesn’t always exist, and when it does, it is very short. However, when the ice is thicker than 16 inches, we are able to fell trees onto frozen lakes and use Bobcats and small trucks on the ice to remove the tree debris.
Urban Tree and Landscape is family-owned and operated by Gabe Tschida. Gabe’s core values of honesty, integrity, and reliability guide every interaction you have with Urban Tree. Spring is just around the corner. Don’t miss your chance to prevent tree disease and save money on tree pruning this winter. contact Urban Tree & Landscape today at 612-532-9996 or www.utrees.com.

Why Winter Is the Best Time for Many Types of Tree Care

With the fresh blanket of snow much of Minnesota just received, it’s likely that the last thing on your mind is tree care. But winter is actually the best time for many types of tree care, including disease control and pruning. Here’s Urban Tree & Landscape’s guide to winter tree care.

Oak and Elm Tree Disease Control in Winter

During the winter months in Minnesota, all our trees and shrubs are dormant. So are the insects and pathogens that cause tree disease. This makes winter the safest season to work on species that are susceptible to certain diseases.
Winter is the best time to prune oak and elm trees. The insects and fungi that cause oak wilt and Dutch elm disease are dormant. If you have any oak or elm trees that need pruning, now is the time. Warmer weather just around the corner, reawakening insects and fungi. If you wait too long, you’ll be stuck waiting until fall of 2018.

Preventing Emerald Ash Borer Damage in Winter

The dreaded emerald ash borer beetle is less likely to spread in the winter. The beetles and their larvae are dormant during the colder months. During warmer months, the insects are active. If you trim and remove a tree during this time, it increases the chance the pests will infect more trees. Sometimes this is necessary, but avoiding moving ash tree debris in the winter is safer for the health of your urban forest, especially for trees that are not already infested.

Tree Pruning and Removal in Winter

Winter is a great time to prune or remove trees that are in sensitive landscapes, such as turf grass. In the summer, we need to lay down plywood to prevent our equipment from damaging your yard. When the ground is frozen, we can access your tree without damaging your lawn. We don’t need to put down plywood, skipping a step and saving you money.
Another benefit of the ground being frozen is that you avoid putting any dents and divots in the lawn from branches coming down. The frozen ground also allows for cranes and other pieces of heavy equipment to go onto your driveway without damaging it. The frozen earth beneath your driveway makes it much stronger than it is in the summer.

Pruning Lakeshore Trees in Winter

Sometimes trees located along a lake must come down. If there is enough ice to let us use the lake as a work zone, the savings to you the client can be substantial. This window of opportunity doesn’t always exist, and when it does, it is very short. However, when the ice is thicker than 16 inches, we are able to fell trees onto frozen lakes and use Bobcats and small trucks on the ice. We can also use Bobcats to transport debris to a landing rather than attempting to move it up hill. The cold winter we are experiencing may be an opportunity to have lakeside trees removed for a discount.
Spring is just around the corner. Don’t miss your chance to prevent tree disease and save money on tree pruning this winter. Contact Urban Tree & Landscape today to book your consultation.

Emerald Ash Borer FAQs


  1. Where did the emerald ash borer come from?
  2. How did it get here?
  3. What types of trees does the emerald ash borer attack?
  4. Where has it been found?
  5. What happens to infested ash trees?
  6. What do emerald ash borers look like?
  7. What is the life cycle of this borer?
  8. How is this pest spread?
  9. How long has the emerald ash borer been in Michigan?
  10. Does it only attack dying or stressed trees?
  11. What is being done on a statewide basis about this new pest?
  12. How big a problem is EAB?
  13. Who do I call to get more information on the Emerald Ash Borer or to report an infested tree?

  1. Where did the emerald ash borer come from?
    The natural range of Agrilus planipennis, or the emerald ash borer, is eastern Russia, northern China, Japan, and Korea. Before June of 2002, it had never been found in North America.

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  2. How did it get here?
    We don’t know for sure, but it most likely came in ash wood used for stabilizing cargo in ships or for packing or crating heavy consumer products.

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  3. What types of trees does the emerald ash borer attack?
    In North America, it has only been found in ash trees. Trees in woodlots as well as landscaped areas are affected. Larval galleries have been found in trees or branches measuring as little as 1-inch in diameter. All species of North American ash appear to be susceptible.

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  4. Where has it been found?
    In 2002, EAB was thought to occur in six counties in southeastern Michigan: Livingston, Macomb, Monroe, Oakland, Washtenaw and Wayne, and in Essex County Ontario. Our ability to detect and find EAB has substantially improved since then, however, and we now realize that a much greater area was infested than what was initially thought. Now there are only three counties in Michigan where EAB has not been detected. It has also been found in Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Minnesota, Missouri, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Ontario and Quebec, making EAB an international pest problem. Most of these infestations are not new (i.e., EAB has not spread this far in the past 5 years). We are simply getting better at finding infestations as survey methods improve. However, it is important to watch for signs and symptoms of EAB in non-quarantine areas where the beetle may have been accidentally transported in ash firewood.

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  5. What happens to infested ash trees?
    The canopy of infested trees begins to thin above infested portions of the trunk and major branches because the borer destroys the water and nutrient conducting tissues under the bark. Heavily infested trees exhibit canopy die-back usually starting at the top of the tree. One-third to one-half of the branches may die in one year. Most of the canopy will be dead within 2 years of when symptoms are first observed. Sometimes ash trees push out sprouts from the trunk after the upper portions of the tree dies. Although difficult to see, the adult beetles leave a “D”-shaped exit hole in the bark, roughly 1/8 inch in diameter, when they emerge in June.

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  6. What do emerald ash borers look like?
    The adult beetle is dark metallic green in color, 1/2 inch-long and 1/8 inch wide. There are several pictures of EAB in the Photo Album and EAB Life Cycle pages.

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  7. What is the life cycle of this borer?
    Recent research shows that the beetle can have a one- or two-year life cycle. Adults begin emerging in mid to late May with peak emergence in late June. Females usually begin laying eggs about 2 weeks after emergence. Eggs hatch in 1-2 weeks, and the tiny larvae bore through the bark and into the cambium – the area between the bark and wood where nutrient levels are high. The larvae feed under the bark for several weeks, usually from late July or early August through October. The larvae typically pass through four stages, eventually reaching a size of roughly 1 to 1.25 inches long. Most EAB larvae overwinter in a small chamber in the outer bark or in the outer inch of wood. Pupation occurs in spring and the new generation of adults will emerge in May or early June, to begin the cycle again. View the EAB life cycle.

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  8. How is this pest spread?
    We know EAB adults can fly at least 1/2 mile from the tree where they emerge. Many infestations, however, were started when people moved infested ash nursery trees, logs, or firewood into uninfested areas. Shipments of ash nursery trees and ash logs with bark are now regulated, and transporting firewood outside of the quarantined areas is illegal, but transport of infested firewood remains a problem. PLEASE – do not move any ash firewood or logs outside of the quarantined area.

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  9. How long has the emerald ash borer been in Michigan?
    No one knows for sure. Experts feel that it may have been in the Detroit area for at least 12 years. The initial infestation probably started from a small number of beetles. Over the next few years, the population began to build and spread. By 2002, many trees in southeastern Michigan were dead or dying. In North America, native ash trees have little or no resistance to EAB and natural enemies have so far had little effect when EAB populations are high.

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  10. Does it only attack dying or stressed trees?
    Healthy ash trees are also susceptible, although beetles may prefer to lay eggs or feed on stressed trees. When EAB populations are high, small trees may die within 1-2 years of becoming infested and large trees can be killed in 3-4 years.

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  11. What is being done on a statewide basis about this new pest?
    Many agencies and universities are working together to educate citizens about identification of ash trees and EAB and options for protecting valuable shade trees. State and federal agencies have programs in place to help restore the urban forest in cities that sustained heavy EAB damage. Research is underway to learn more about the biology of EAB, its rate of spread, methods for EAB detection, predators and other natural enemies that may attack EAB, and how insecticides can be used to protect trees in infested areas.

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  12. How big a problem is EAB?
    EAB is becoming an international problem, with infestations in Canada as well as Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Missouri, Wisconsin, Maryland, West Virginia and Virginia. The scope of this problem could reach the billions of dollars nationwide if not dealt with. State and federal agencies have made this problem a priority. Homeowners can also help by carefully monitoring their ash trees for signs and symptoms of EAB throughout the year.

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  13. Who do I call to get more information on the Emerald Ash Borer or to report an infested tree?
    Who do I call to get more information on the Emerald Ash Borer or to report an infested tree? Contact your county Extension office or the nearest Department of Agriculture office. You may also contact the USDA Emerald Ash Borer Hotline toll-free at 1-866-322-4512. Also, check out the “Is EAB in your state?” link at the left of this page.