Skip to Content
Main Content

Emerald Ash Borer

In August of 2009 Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), an exotic beetle from Asia that feeds on all ash trees, was discovered by the City of Franklin Public Works Department and confirmed by the Department of Agriculture. The first find of EAB was in the southeast section of Franklin at the intersection of S. 35th Street and W. Hilltop Lane.  As anticipated, EAB has spread to every corner of Franklin and populations have reached heavy concentrations.  As of 2017, the City of Franklin currently manages 10,000 street trees; in 2010, Ash trees made up 3,200 (30%) of the street trees.  Now in 2017, the Ash population has been brought down to 650 trees. 

The City has been increasing the planting program since 2010 and plants between 250 and 300 trees a year.  The biggest focus of planting is increasing the species diversity of the street trees.  General recommendation is that no species should make up more than 10% of the urban forest population.  Franklin has greatly increased the diversity of the forest and has even added 6 new species to the mix.  Although it is of great loss to see trees being removed, we are using this as an opportunity to strengthen and improve the health and diversity of the City's urban forest. 

Emerald Ash Borer will affect the upper portion of a tree first, but ultimately it takes approximately 3 to 4 years for EAB to kill a tree.  Public Works employees will only remove public trees on City owned lands or on road right-of-way, no private trees. 


  • To help slow the spread of this destructive pest and keep the urban forest healthy and safe, it is imperative that homeowners remove diseased trees.  The longer these trees remain standing, the more brittle they become, making them dangerous and more expensive to have removed.

  • To help our urban forest grow and cut costs for the City, it is important that homeowners water any newly planted trees in their right-of-way.  Please also remind friends and neighbors to water young trees.

If you have any concerns with trees in City right-of-way adjacent to your property, or would like a tree inspected, please call the Franklin Department of Public Works at 414-425-2592.  The links below offer numerous amounts of information for the public on identifying ash trees and symptoms of EAB.  The links also provide information on treatment options.  The City does allow private residents to treat the street trees adjacent to their property but a "Contractor Authorization to Treat Ash Trees" form must be filled out and returned to the Department of Public Works. A form is not needed for residents treating trees on their private property.

Emerald Ash Borer Online Resources:

Contractor Authorization to Treat Ash Trees Form  

Dept. of Public Works

7979 W. Ryan Road
Franklin, WI  53132

Phone:  414-425-2592
Fax:  414-425-7315

Hours:  M-F, 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Department of Public Works

Kevin Schlueter, Superintendent
Rich Katzfey, Asst. Superintendent
Tom Riha, City Forester
Andrea Stormoen, Admin. Assistant


Related Links

Park Reservations