Land Services Dept., DATCP: Buy local evergreen products to protect against invasive species
For the Tomahawk Leader
WISCONSIN – The Lincoln County Land Services Department and the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) last week reminded shoppers to inspect evergreen products for signs of invasive species before purchasing.
“In previous years, state officials have found evergreen decorations infested with invasive species that were being imported into Wisconsin from other states,” a release from the Land Services Department said. “Elongated Hemlock Scale (EHS) is one such invasive that has been found on imported evergreen products in recent years and poses a threat to Wisconsin’s forests and evergreen farms.”
The department noted that purchasing locally-grown evergreen products and inspecting evergreen décor for signs of invasive species can help slow their spread.
“To identify EHS, look for discolored needles and small brown, oblong scale insects on the underside of the needles,” DATCP stated.
DATCP asked that suspected EHS on fir wreaths or Christmas trees be reported to the DATCP’s pest hotline at 866-440-7523. DATCP also requested that photos be emailed to email@example.com.
“There are many Christmas tree farms in the Northwoods of Wisconsin that sell not only trees, but garlands, wreaths, and bows as well,” the department noted.
The Christmas Tree Producers Association has a list of these businesses available online at www.christmastrees-wi.org/.