CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- It is a race against time.
Tree experts say the Emerald Ash Borer Beetle is at Charlotte's doorstep and residents need to take action now. The pests have already killed roughly 50 million ash trees throughout the Midwest.
Heartwood Tree Service injected several Ash trees in the Sardis Woods neighborhood Tuesday. The project was sponsored by Trees Charlotte. Using pumps and needles, the pesticide was moved into the veins of a handful of trees.
"In the next five to 10 years, we will not have Ash trees anymore," said Stephen Clough, with Heartwood Tree Service. "Once we inject it the root area of the tree, it uses the vascular system to move the product throughout the canopy."
The chemical will kill insects as they feed on the soft underside of the bark. Any larva left over will also be killed. Heartwood says the service cost roughly $300 a tree, but say that is a fraction of removing a dead tree. A healthy Ash tree will die just two years after an infestation.
For Clough and his team, today is a win in what looks to be a long battle for Charlotte's Ash trees.
"It's huge for us," he said.
North Carolinians can help in the fight. The North Carolina Forestry Service asks if you notice an ash tree in severe decline, check for D-shaped exit holes in the bark.
To report a suspected infestation, send an email here. Officials encourage you to submit photos of the suspected infestation with email. You can also call 800-206-9333 or contact your NCFS county ranger.
To learn more about the Emerald Ash Borer, click here.