Ash tree quarantine order
The following sites will be accepting ash tree materials within the quarantined area:

Denver Regional Landfill, 1441 Weld County Road 6, Erie

Front Range Landfill, 1830 Weld County Road 5, Erie

Republic Landfill, 8900 Colo. 93, Golden

For more information about the emerald ash borer and the quarantine, visit EABcolorado.com.

The Colorado Department of Agriculture on Tuesday announced an ash tree quarantine in Boulder County following the recent local discovery of the emerald ash borer, a destructive pest that threatens the trees.

The quarantine prohibits moving untreated ash trees or their parts out of the county and surrounding quarantined areas.

The emerald ash borer is an invasive insect species responsible for killing more than 50 million ash trees across 21 U.S. states since 2002, according to officials.

Boulder forestry employees found an ash tree infested with the pests near 30th Street and Iris Avenue on Sept. 23, according to the city. The U.S. Department of Agriculture later positively identified the specimens.

The quarantined area includes all of Boulder County and the entire town of Erie. It also extends eastward, covering an area bordered on the south by Colo. 7, on the north by Colo. 52 and on the east by Weld County Road 7.

A mile-wide corridor of Colo. 93 south of Boulder is also quarantined, including the entire Republic Landfill property and the Singing Saw Woodworks property at 11218 Colo. 93. The 15-acre Community Sort Yard at 8200 Colo. 7 in Allenspark is also under quarantine, according to a state news release.

Items that fall under the quarantine include logs, green lumber, nursery stock, wood chips, mulch, stumps, roots, branches and firewood, according to the news release. Exceptions to the quarantine include seeds, leaves, kiln-dried, processed firewood, and finished wood products without bark, according to the state's order.

Mitch Yergert, director of the Colorado Department of Agriculture's plant industry division, said that, to his knowledge, the state has never seen such a quarantine. It may remain in place for several years until officials determine the area is clear of infestation, he said.

"Our concern is that it will eventually end up killing a majority of the ash trees," he said. "It's estimated that 15 percent of the urban forest in the Denver metro area is ash trees."

Ash materials may be moved within the quarantined area but may not be moved outside the border without authorization from the USDA. Penalties for violating the quarantine could reach $1,000 per violation.

Ash materials can be disposed of at three landfills in the quarantine area, according to county officials.

The county's flood debris removal program, including curbside collection, will not be affected by the quarantine, according to officials.

Signs of an infestation of the small, green, metallic-colored insects include general decline in an ash tree's appearance, thinning of upper branches, loss of leaves and serpentine tunnels on the tree caused by larvae under the bark, according to the state. Increased woodpecker activity around a tree could also be a sign.

Yergert recommends that people who suspect they may have an infested ash on their property contact a landscaping professional to determine the best course of action.

Boulder forester Kathleen Alexander said the quarantine is "an important step to limit the infestation and slow the spread" of the insects.

Contact Camera Staff Writer Joe Rubino at 303-473-1328, rubinoj@dailycamera.com or twitter.com/JoeCarmenRubino.