Hello, Ashtabula County! It has been tough to get much done this year due to all the rain. Whether it be getting fields planted or just getting the lawn mowed, this year continues to be challenging. Today, as we wait for it to dry out, I would like to announce the winners of the Ashtabula County Cattlemen’s Scholarships and give a short PSA about our dead Ash trees in the area.

• The Ashtabula County Cattlemen’s Association is pleased to announce that Kate Cole from Dorset has been selected to receive the $1,000 Cattlemen’s Youth Scholarship for the 2019-2020 school year.

The committee is also pleased to announce that Mason Mazzaro of Williamsfield was selected to receive a $500 Cattlemen’s Youth Scholarship for the 2019-20 school year. This scholarship fund was established in 2011 to award scholarships to deserving Ashtabula County students for their involvement in the beef industry in Ashtabula County.

Kate Cole is the daughter of Joe and Deana Cole of Dorset. Kate is 2019 a graduate of Cole Academy and will be attending Southern Wesleyan University next fall taking part in their gap year program.

Mason Mazzaro is the son of Thomas and Charity Mazzaro of Williamsfield. Mason is a 2019 graduate from Pymatuning Valley High School and will be attending Ohio State University majoring in Agribusiness and Applied Economics next fall.

Best of luck to both of these bright, young students!

• After their introduction from Asia, the emerald ash borer has been responsible for killing hundreds of millions of ash trees in North America. As of a few months ago, the emerald ash borer has been found in 35 states across America and in five Canadian provinces.

Residents of Ashtabula County who have ash trees on their property have likely been aware of this problem for many years when it started to affect parts of our county. Every spring it is evident as the other trees push out new leaves, showing the bare ash branches in contrast. Sadly, at this point most of the ash in the area are either dead, or barely hanging on to a few leaves. While we can’t turn back time and find a way to stop the threat of ash borer, we need to be aware of the current threat related to the areas ash trees.

The current threat we face is falling ash trees and branches. By having such a great number of trees die at the same time, and having fungi feeding on the dead standing trees over the last few years, all we need to add is some high winds and we get a recipe for a dangerous situation.

Just recently we had two large ash trees removed from behind the extension office. Both of these trees were leaning towards the office building, and eventually they would have fell onto our office. In situations like this, tall trees in a densely developed area, tree removal professionals are essential to removing the trees safely.

If there are still dead ash trees on your property, now may be the time to access the situation and do something about them. These trees could be a safety hazard as they could land on your buildings, cars, or fences and cause serious damage to your property. Besides the safety reasons, another reason to act now is that there is still value in most of these trees. Most of the ash can still be cut for lumber, and can definitely be cut for firewood. Ash splits easy and burns long and hot, making it a desirable choice for the fireplace.

Keep an eye out for dead ash trees on your property and take care of any potential safety hazards.

For advice on choosing an arborist to inspect or remove an ash or another type of tree, visit go.osu.edu/hiringanarborist.


ANDREW HOLDEN an extension educator, agriculture and natural resources, Ohio State University Extension. He can be reached at 440-576-9008 or Holden.155@osu.edu.

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