When I first bought a new house, I realized that the front trees were a little overgrown. I was worried about a branch breaking in the wind and smashing into a window or the roof, and so I decided to invest in professional tree service. When the arborist came, he had more concerns than just a few overgrown branches. Apparently, a few of my trees had also developed serious pest infestations, and I was worried about what it might mean for their health. He carefully trimmed each tree to ward off disease, and within a few weeks, they were looking a lot better. This blog explains how a professional tree trimmer could help you, so that you aren't left with dying trees.
Birch trees are a very lovely addition to your yard, but they suffer from one of the most destructive of all pest infestations: the bronze birch borer. This pest causes life-threatening damage to birch trees across the nation, and understanding these creatures and how to treat them can help clean them out of your yard forever.
The life cycle of the bronze birch borer is incredibly destructive because every step of it somehow involves damaging birch trees. Adult borers eat the leaves of the birch tree to prepare themselves for egg laying. When they're ready, they will lay their eggs in cracks in the bark. And once the eggs hatch, the larva burrows into the surface of the tree.
Here's where the most damage is done: the bronze birch borer larva, safe from winter conditions, will feed on the heart of the tree and cause severe damage to its health. And when it reaches adulthood, it will burrow back to the surface to repeat the cycle.
Bronze birch borers are not generally indiscriminate eaters: they will attack any kind of birch tree that they can find. However, they tend to be more attracted to white bark birch trees, such as the paper birch and gray birch. As a result, they more rarely attack river birch, sweet birch, or yellow birch.
However, once they infest a tree, they will continue to feed on it for years, causing severe damage to nutrient transport systems, which can cause massive leaf die off, dead roots, and the death of the tree itself.
Range of Infestation
Wherever there are birch trees, the bronze birch borer can be found. However, they are more prominent in northern states and across the Canadian border. For example, they have been found as far east as Newfoundland and Maine and as far west as British Columbia and Idaho.
Eliminating the bronze birch borer from your trees and restoring them to their natural health requires multiple treatment methods. First of all, you need to ensure the health of your tree by watering them regularly: one slow watering every few weeks should be enough. Next, you need to spread at least three-inches of wood chips around the base of the tree to hold in moisture. However, you should not fertilize infested trees: the extra growth can actually attract more birch borers.
Next, spray insecticides on your tree to kill the birch borer larva contained inside. One application a year should be more than enough to kill the larva and protect your tree from further infestations. Unfortunately, if you're too late with your insecticides and your birch is heavily damaged, you may want to remove it.
Following these simple DIY extermination guidelines should get rid of the bronze birch borers in your yard for good. However, if they keep coming back to your birch trees every year, you should call a tree services expert, such as Troyer Tree Service Inc, immediately to find a more permanent solution.