Contents (Click To Jump)
- 1 What Are the Most Common Tree Issues In Eau Claire?
- 2 Does the City of Eau Claire Provide Any Assistance in Tree Removal Problems?
- 3 Who Is Responsible for Fallen Tree Removal in Eau Claire?
- 4 How Does the Soil Affect Trees in Eau Claire?
- 5 Does Weather Affect Tree Health in Eau Claire?
- 6 What If Dead Trees Are Near Power Lines In Eau Claire?
- 7 How Much Does Tree Removal Usually Cost in Eau Claire?
What Are the Most Common Tree Issues In Eau Claire?
One of the biggest issues is the presence of invasive emerald ash borer, which has killed a number of ash trees recently, including several in Owens Park. The beetles not only attack ash but all species, as well as the related white fringetree. The beetle lays its eggs on the tree, and its larvae do significant damage before emerging as adults. Signs that your tree might be infested include yellow, thin, or wilted foliage, D-shaped exit holes from where adult beetles, shoots growing from the roots or the trunk with larger than usual leaves, and unusual levels of interest from woodpeckers. Woodpeckers find ash borer larvae quite tasty, but unfortunately, they aren’t able to eat enough of them to help.
Avoid moving firewood over distances, and if you find signs of infection, you should contact the state agriculture agency; ash borer is a reportable pest. It is possible to keep your tree alive with systemic insecticides, but this is not a cure. The treatment will have to be repeated every year. Talk to us; we will be able to determine whether treatment is possible and a good idea. Heavily infested trees should be removed. Untreated trees will die. If you remove the tree, we will help you dispose of the wood appropriately to help keep the beetles from spreading. If you use firewood yourself, you can use the wood, but you should not ship it. If you do lose an ash tree, consider replacing it with an alternative.
Another common issue in the area is oak wilt. Oak wilt is established in Eau Claire county. Red oaks are particularly vulnerable. Oak wilt kills trees quickly (within about a month). White oaks can survive for some time and may even recover. It is caused by a fungal infection of the tree’s water-conducting system, which is spread by sap-feeding beetles. It can then spread from tree to tree if they are close enough for their root systems to touch. Symptoms start at the upper canopy and work downwards.
As the fungus is introduced through open wounds, the best way to prevent oak wilt is to avoid pruning and trimming trees when the beetles are active. If you have to prune a tree, use a wound sealer. The City of Eau Claire restricts pruning of vulnerable trees between April 1 and July 31. Any red oak or related tree infected with oak wilt should be removed. Talk to us about methods to protect any other oak trees you might have in your yard. As with emerald ash borer, infected wood should not be transported for use as firewood.
Does the City of Eau Claire Provide Any Assistance in Tree Removal Problems?
Eau Claire has achieved the status of “Tree City, USA“. One of the ways they have done this is by permitting residents to assist in planting trees on their boulevard, which can earn you a $60 rebate. However, trees must be of an approved type. Also, the city does not allow the planting of the following trees: Chinese elm and Siberian elm (because of concerns with Dutch elm disease), boxelder (due to attracting bugs), and cottonwood (because it clogs air conditioning intakes).
Because of the emerald ash borer problem, the city is encouraging the removal and replacement of ash trees. Many ash trees have already been removed and replaced proactively. The city will also remove an ash tree planted outside your home on request even if it is not infested or in poor condition. Be aware that you may be ordered to remove a dead or dying ash. Because of this, if you have an ash tree on your property, you should get it inspected soon. We can tell you whether it is healthy and help you with proactive treatment to protect your tree.
Who Is Responsible for Fallen Tree Removal in Eau Claire?
As with most places, a tree’s owner is the owner of the land the trunk is on. If a tree falls on your property, you are responsible for removal. However, the city is responsible for fallen boulevard trees (and for repairing any damage, such as if one of them lands in your fence).
If the tree was infested with some kind of pest then you need to also talk to us about proper disposal of the wood. For emerald ash borers, one thing we can do is chip the wood into less than one-inch squares. This kills any larvae present and the chips can then be used.
If you’re a homeowner?
Again, you are responsible for any trees which fall on your property. Your homeowners’ insurance will generally cover the related expenses and damage. However, if you don’t have a sick or dying tree properly removed then you may find your insurer is reluctant to pay up as you should have known it was going to come down.
Regularly inspecting trees for damage, especially ash and oak trees, can help you avoid the damage that can be caused by falling trees.
If you’re a renter?
Wisconsin landlord-tenant law is silent on who is responsible for tree maintenance. Because of this, responsibility is likely delineated in your lease. If in doubt, you should talk to your landlord.
Unless specified otherwise, your landlord is responsible for dealing with and removing fallen trees. In larger buildings, the landlord is definitely responsible for landscaping. You should notify your landlord immediately of a fallen tree or if you see signs that a tree on the property is damaged or in poor condition.
If you’re a landlord?
Again, the law is silent on tree maintenance and removal. Unless you have an agreement otherwise, you should assume that you are responsible for all tree maintenance and for the removal of fallen trees.
Keep lines of communication open with your tenants and make sure that they know to work with you if a tree is downed, or alternatively, if it is sick or damaged.
If you’re a neighbor?
The owner of the tree is the owner of the trunk. If you have a tree that straddles your property line, you want to coordinate with your neighbor to make sure that the tree is being properly treated and maintained. This is particularly the case if a tree is being treated for the prevention of emerald ash borer. You need to know who is responsible for applying and/or paying for the treatments.
If your neighbor’s tree falls on your property, they are responsible for the damage, which will most likely be covered by their homeowners’ insurance policy.
How Does the Soil Affect Trees in Eau Claire?
Most of the soil in Eau Claire county is shallow to deep, loamy soil underlain by sandstone. However, there are sandy soils close to streams. In order to find out what kind of soil you have, it’s best to get your soil tested. The University of Wisconsin-Madison Extension Eau Claire County will perform soil testing for you if you collect a sample and send it to them, including making recommendations as to what kind of fertilizer you should use. If you want a faster response you will need to hire a soil testing company.
You should select trees to plant with your soil test results in mind. In some parts of the county, you may have wet soil. It’s vital to plant trees, such as red maple, that are tolerant of wet soil conditions. For your existing trees, knowing the soil type will help you know when and how much to apply fertilizer or mulch to support the ongoing health of your trees.
Does Weather Affect Tree Health in Eau Claire?
Eau Claire’s climate is typical for the upper midwest, with pleasant and relatively mild summers and extremely cold winters. The largest weather risk to your trees is winter storms, but summer thunderstorms can also cause damage to trees.
Trees should be inspected after a storm for hidden damage, and trees that threaten power lines or structures should be promptly removed. The city will clear up storm debris.
Planting native trees that are resistant to the winds is the best way to avoid your trees being damaged by heavy storms. We will help remove damaged branches so your trees can recover and your home and property are not at risk.
What If Dead Trees Are Near Power Lines In Eau Claire?
Electricity in Eau Claire is provided by several different companies: Xcel Energy, the Eau Claire Energy Cooperative, and RWE Renewables Americas LLC. You should call your respective company if a dead tree is near or on power lines. If the tree is on your property, you will still be responsible for removal, but the utility company can ensure that the line is de-energized so the tree can be worked on safely.
One of the largest causes of power outages is dead trees or fallen branches touching power lines, particularly after an ice storm or heavy snowfall. It’s vital to report them quickly. For boulevard trees, you should contact both the utility company and the city forestry department.
How Much Does Tree Removal Usually Cost in Eau Claire?
Removing a small tree in Eau Claire costs about $400, although larger trees are obviously more costly and can reach up to around $2,000 in some cases. The typical cost of trunk injections (to protect against emerald ash borer) is $52. Obviously, these costs can vary according to the exact situation. Some factors that affect cost are:
Larger trees typically cost more to remove than smaller ones, and if you need multiple trees removed the cost can go up further. For larger trees, we need more people and heavier equipment, increasing the cost of both equipment and labor.
If the tree we are removing is affected by ash borer or oak wilt, then we will need to dispose of the wood properly to slow the spread of these pests. Often, this means chipping the wood, which can cost money. We follow all recommendations for properly disposing of infested wood.
Another small factor is that if we need to take steps to protect other trees from the spread of oak wilt, this can require digging and trenching to cut roots between the infested tree and healthy trees. This can sometimes save your other trees but does cost.
The location of the tree also has an impact. If the tree is easy to get to, it will cost less than if we have to use a crane to get to it. Trees that have fallen onto or are very near structures also cost more as we take steps to ensure that your property is not damaged.