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Bloomington's Parks And Recreation Fight Growing Problem In City's Parks
Updated March 25, 2015 7:23 AM
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(BLOOMINGTON) - Many beautiful plants are taking over and crowding out other plants and animals that are native to the area. It's a problem around the city... in the parks and landscaping.

In Monroe County the short list of invasive vegetation includes the Asian Bush Honeysuckle, Autumn Olive, Garlic Mustard, Japanese Honeysuckle, Japanese Knotweed, Japanese Stiltgrass, Kudzu, Multiflora Rose, Tree of Heaven, Wintercreeper, and the Burning Bush.

Right now, the emerald ash borer is one of the city's most costly invasive insect to handle. Lee Huss, urban forester for the City of Bloomington, says as part of a new management plan his department is collecting health data on nearly 700 ash trees.

Those 700 trees are "city street trees," which means they are in the public right of way. Most of them are located between the street and the sidewalk.

In 2014, the department treated 52 ash trees at an estimated cost of $7,000. The department will treat ash trees every two years for what Huss says could be eight to ten more years.

"We're fortunate in Bloomington that our population of ash trees is not extremely high, so I think it is very manageable," Huss says.

Each ash tree on public property is marked with a purple dot. But when it comes to private property, Huss says it's left up to the owner to decide whether to treat or cut down their ash trees.

The city stopped planting ash trees in 2007.



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