Emerald Ash Borer

According to the State of New Jersey, Department of Agriculture, all ash trees in NJ should be considered at high risk for EAB.


Emerald ash borer (agrilus planipennis) – Commonly referred to as EAB

Insect larvae effectively girdle affected tree

Affected tree species:
Ash (Fraxinus) species, commonly green ash and white ash, also white fringe tree

# of ash trees in NJ:
24.7 million trees (mostly in the north), 24% of NJ forests have ash

Lifespan of Infested Tree:
3-4 years

Protection Treatments:
Soil treatment or trunk injection, bark spray

Precaution: Dying ash endangers people and property—ash is a commonly planted street tree



Emerald ash borer (EAB) is a non-native insect pest that infests and kills all species of ash trees in North America. It was first discovered in southeastern Michigan in 2002 and EAB has since been found in 27 additional states and 2 Canadian providences. The EAB has killed tens of millions of ash trees in Michigan alone, as well as hundreds of millions of additional trees in the other infested states and providences.




The adult EAB is approximately 1/2” long and 1/8” wide, metallic green in color, with a metallic copper red abdomen. The larvae are white or cream colored, measure approximately 1 to 1 ¼” long and have 10 abdominal segments that are bell shaped. The EAB has a 1-year lifecycle.

EAB adults emerge in May or early June creating D-shaped exit holes, 3-4 mm in size on the branches and trunks of infested trees. The female adult EAB feeds on the margins of the ash leaf. After feeding, the female EAB deposits eggs in bark crevices or under bark flaps on the trunk or bark. The adult beetle stays active until August. After the egg matures, larvae burrow under the bark and feed on the cambium – the water and nutrient transporting layer of the tree. The larvae become adult beetles in April or May.



EAB first infest the top of the tree’s crown, which makes spotting adult beetles or exit holes nearly impossible from the ground. Woodpecker activity and damage on live trees is often an initial symptom of an EAB infestation. As EAB populations increase, crown dieback, epicormic branching, bark splits, and exit holes lower on the bole become more prevalent.Trees will only live an average of 3-4 years after infestation and 99% of ash trees will die.








There are three insecticide options available to protect against Emerald Ash Borers (EAB);

  1. Topical spray
  2. Soil Drench/Injection
  3. Tree Injection

The best Emerald Ash Borer treatment depends on the location of your tree and should be determined by one of our Certified Arborists. When the right treatment option is chosen and applied correctly, there is no harm to the tree, humans, animals, or the general environment surrounding including other trees and plants. The right treatment can make a drastic difference in your tree’s appearance and health. Just look at this picture and you will see the difference.

**Please report signs of the Emerald Ash Beetle to JBS Tree Experts at (732) 966-2273.  This will allow us to keep the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection updated on this vastly spreading beetle.