By Dan Domsic
The Fishers Dept. of Public Works plans to replace 21 of the 34 ash trees on 116th Street that were infected by emerald ash borer beetles.
Of the 34, 26 were recently removed, according to a post from the Town of Fishers. Not all of them will be replaced due to “nearby utility pipes,” the post goes on to explain.
“For safety reasons, the Fishers Dept. of Public Works is in the process of removing more ash trees (that are either dead or dying from emerald ash borers) from the right-of-way locations throughout town and in some parks,” Maura Leon-Barber, Town of Fishers director of communications, said via email.
Leon-Barber said that it would cost the town approximately $39,000 to replace the trees, which will be bought from Premier Trees in Fishers.
She said DPW was assisting the nursery with hauling out the old stumps, as well as assisting with lane and road closures.
The trees are located on the stretch of 116th Street between Holland Drive and Conner Creek Parkway.
According to Leon-Barber, the expense was budgeted this year under median landscape renovations.
Each replacement tree weighs 10,000 pounds and will be installed “as soon as the weather cooperates.”
“Due to the growing environment of a major road median, we felt that replacing the dead ash with large maples increases the odds of survival,” Leon-Barber said. “Three-inch caliper trees were originally installed – this isn’t a new practice.
She said the trees were discovered to be infected in 2010. A follow-up treatment was planned last year, but the bug that was discovered in the state in 2004 (according to the DNR), was found in Fishers, so the follow-up treatment was cancelled.
Hamilton County is under quarantine because of the emerald ash borer, according to the town. That means pieces of ash trees only smaller than 1 inch can leave the county, Leon-Barber said.