Minneapolis/ Parks & Nature
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Published on April 03, 2024
Bloomington Ramps Up Defense and Community Efforts Against Emerald Ash Borer at Dwan Golf CourseSource: USDA-APHIS, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Bloomington's battle against the Emerald Ash Borer has taken a turn at the Dwan Golf Course, where officials are waging war on the invasive pest that's devastating ash trees across the city. In the trenches since 2014, city staff surveyed the greens for signs of infestation and removed obstructionist or storm-tossed trees to gird the surviving ones against EAB's relentless assault; a foresighted move where 100 out of the 207 ash trees at Dwan felt the chainsaw's bite by 2021.

In 2022, despite these frontline efforts, EAB reared its ugly head at Dwan, prompting a fresh survey where crews tagged and plotted the fate of each ash tree; the course management, blindsided by the infestation's resurgence, scrambled to devise a strategy distinguishing the salvageable from the lost, according to details posted on the City's website. The purge isn't just about removal, as city officials emphasize the importance of replanting to maintain the urban forest's health and initiated an Ash Tree Replacement Plan, which, since 2015, has seen more than 40 new trees dot the landscape at Dwan.

Moving from defense to offense, Bloomington residents and organizations are being rallied to contribute by planting memorial trees or through donations, ushering in a new leaf of community engagement in the quest for reforestation and ecological defense. Participation details can be gathered by visiting the city's memorials page, readying citizens to lend hands and hearts in rooting for a more resilient green canopy for their hometown.

In the face where nature and civilization intersect, Bloomington has rolled up its collective sleeves to confront EAB with strategy, science, and civic spirit—no small feat in the modern urban landscape where green is gold and every tree counts; it’s a sign of a community digging in deep for the long haul, putting down roots literally and metaphorically for generations to come—those interested in turning their green into Bloomington's greenery can find more info at blm.mn/memorials.