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City Of Ann Arbor Adds Additional Money For Tree Maintenance

City of Ann Arbor
City of Ann Arbor Seal

City vows to help combat a new threat to its urban forest.

Ann Arbor officials committed an additional $1M this year to catch up on tree maintenance. None too soon, as the Michigan Department of Natural Resources has pinpointed a new threat to the city's urban forest.

Michigan Department of Natural Resources officials state Oak Wilt is now well-established in the state, and can kill Red Oaks quickly. The fungus blocks water from getting up the tree, and kills within weeks of the first signs of the problem. Forest Health Program Manager, Roger Mech, says prevention is the key to stopping Oak Wilt. Mech attests that "once the disease gets in, unfortunately because this fungus moves so quickly, there's not a lot of options.

Mech states the disease is spread by insects, primarily from mid-April through mid-July. Therefore, Oaks shouldn't be pruned during this period. Moving firewood is another threat, spreading the disease to uninfected areas.

Like 89.1 WEMU on Facebook and follow us on Twitter— Andrew Cluley is the Ann Arbor beat reporter, and anchor for 89.1 WEMU News. Contact him at 734.487.3363 or email him       

Like many, I first came to this area when I started school at the University of Michigan, then fell in love with the community and haven’t left. After graduating from U of M in the mid 1990’s I interned at WDET for several years, while also working a variety of jobs in Ann Arbor. Then in 1999 I joined the WEMU news team.