Tennessee’s forest health management program seeks to minimize resource losses from forest insects, disease, vertebrate pests, or other sources impacting growth such as flooding and air pollution. It monitors and evaluates pest occurrences, promotes healthy forests through education and technical assistance and implements integrated pest management strategies on state forests, nurseries, and orchards.

Tennessee FirewoodScout ad

Emerald Ash Borer Information for Homeowners
– Website provides most pertinent information on Emerald Ash Borer for homeowners and answers the most common questions about the insect and management options

New edition of Insecticide Options for Protecting Ash Trees from Emerald Ash Borer available now from North Central IPM Center


Demand for Pest-free Firewood Heating Up
(June 12, 2017) - Parks and campgrounds urging heat-treatment certification. Federal and state natural resource agencies like the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation want to expand availability of government-certified firewood at public campgrounds. ...While the number of certified firewood-drying kilns in Tennessee is still relatively small, Slayton said she’s “working extremely hard to raise that number so folks can buy Tennessee-produced certified firewood as opposed to out of state producers.”

New firewood policy in place at Davidson County campgrounds
(May 17, 2017) - A new policy is in effect at campgrounds in Nashville that will affect what firewood campers use. "The public has been pretty receptive to it," said Lindsey Sullivan, a park ranger. "The new policy essentially makes campers have to bring in certified heat-treated firewood." Experts say the reason is because of invasive pests killing trees.

Invasive species pose risk to Tennessee homeowners and forests
(January 25, 2017) - The fight to protect East Tennessee's forests — and cities — from an invasive species continues expanding. The emerald ash borer has been found in 47 of the state's 95 counties, while 40 counties are know to be infested with the Hemlock woolly adelgid. Their effects on forests are widespread and well-documented, but the ash borer also poses a risk to homeowners. An April 2016 Times Free Press article chronicled the plight of an East Chattanooga man faced with a $5,000 tab to remove four ash trees from his yard that were killed by the ash borer, lest he risk the dead trees falling on his home.

White County Quarantined For Emerald Ash Borer
(July 19, 2016) - White County is the latest in Tennessee to be quarantined for an invasive pest targeting ash trees. Officials have detected Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) in the eastern section of White County. An adult EAB beetle was recently captured in a trap near Old Railroad Grade Road. With this discovery, White County joins 48 other counties in quarantine with a prohibition on the movement of ash trees and ash tree products.

Hemlock die-off having major ecological impact in Smokies
(July 11, 2016) - Forests throughout the Great Smoky Mountains National Park are undergoing a major ecological shift due to the widespread deaths of hemlock trees caused by an unwelcome insect. Forestry experts tell the Knoxville News Sentinel that hemlocks that for years were in a state of decline are now dead and toppling to the ground, creating a void that could affect everything from stream temperatures to forest composition. The die-off has been linked to the hemlock woolly adelgid, an invasive species that was discovered in the park in 2002.

Tennessee State Parks Asks Public Not to Move Firewood
(May 18, 2016) - Tennessee State Parks, in partnership with the Department of Agriculture Division of Forestry and The Nature Conservancy, is advising the public of a new policy regarding bringing firewood into parks. Beginning June 1, Tennessee State Parks will advise visitors to use certified heat-treated wood. The new policy aims to prevent or slow the introduction of exotic insects or diseases into parks that could otherwise threaten the health of our trees and forests. Visitors who want to have a campfire can bring certified heat-treated firewood into a park or use dead and down wood from an area adjacent to the fire. Manufactured fire logs will also be acceptable. Many parks, in conjunction with approved vendors, will have certified heat-treated firewood available for sale. “Transportation of firewood is a primary pathway for the introduction of harmful pests and pathogens to Tennessee’s forests and woodlands,” said Jere Jeter, Tennessee State Forester with the Department of Agriculture. “We are pleased that State Parks has taken this important step to reduce the risks of new infestations and assist us with the protection of Tennessee’s trees.”

Asian beetle invasion threatens Chattanooga area ash trees with destruction (Times Free Press)
(April 4, 2016) - Jimmy Voyles has a $5,000 problem everyone with an ash tree in their yard needs to know about — because it soon will be their problem, too. On April Fool’s Day afternoon, several blocks from Amnicola Highway in East Chattanooga, the trees in Voyles’ yard were all starting to bud bright green — except for four large ash trees. Broken branches lay on the ground beneath them, and on one, the bark had peeled away to reveal a strange pattern resembling a New York subway system map, with a network of tunnels making S-curves down the side of the tree.

Bradford pear trees create landscape issues for East Tennessee (WBIR)
(April 4, 2016) Bradford pear trees are one of the first trees to bloom in the spring in East Tennessee, but tree experts are warning that they are causing problems for the area. Kasey Krouse, the urban forester for the City of Knoxville, said he has been trying to educate the public on the potential ramifications this tree can cause for the government... "It was a hot tree to plant at the point in time, and it wasn't until 15-20 years later, just in the recent history, that we started seeing the real problems associated with the pear tree," Krouse said... Krouse now fears that the trees, if left uncontrolled, will push out other native vegetation.

Wanted: heat-treated firewood businesses
(March 14, 2016) - Firewood regulations aimed at curbing the introduction of harmful insects into local parks have created new business opportunities based on the growing demand for heat-treated firewood, officials say. On April 9, officials with the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the University of Tennessee, the Tennessee Division of Forestry and The Nature Conservancy will hold a free workshop to discuss the new regulations and the growing need for certified firewood businesses. The workshop will be held from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. at UT's Center for Renewable Carbon on the agriculture campus in Knoxville.

Forestry Division to hold Hemlock wooly adelgid workshop on Nov. 14
(Oct. 23, 2015) - Private landowners near Stinging Forks Falls State Natural Area in Rhea County are joining forces with the Tennessee Hemlock Conservation Partnership to show area landowners how to save their majestic, but threatened hemlock trees. A free workshop to be held Saturday, Nov. 14, will help private landowners learn about the threat of hemlock woolly adelgid (HWA) and gain skills needed to safely treat and preserve their own hemlocks. “The hemlock woolly adelgid has the potential to kill our hemlocks, changing the natural landscape my family and I have known for the last 20 years,” said Chris Anderson, who manages 232 acres on his family’s certified forestry tree farm, CRC Stewardship Ridge, between Stinging Fork Falls and Piney Falls state natural areas and bordering the Cumberland Trail.

Wilson County Quarantined for Emerald Ash Borer
(Oct. 6, 2015) - A quarantine for Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), an invasive insect that destroys ash trees, has been expanded to include another Tennessee county. With EAB discovered in a trap in the Mount Juliet area, Wilson County has now been added to the list of counties restricted for the movement of ash trees and ash tree products. This brings the total number of Tennessee counties under a state and federal EAB quarantine to 47.

Victor Ashe Greenway to close for 3 days
(Aug. 3, 2015) - The greenway connecting Victor Ashe Park and Northwest Middle School will be closed during the day starting Monday, Aug. 3, as crews cut down 22 diseased ash trees. The greenway is expected to reopen by Thursday, Aug. 6. The greenway also will be open Monday evening, Tuesday evening and Wednesday evening next week, when crews aren't working in the area. The ash trees are victims of the emerald ash borer, an exotic pest that's decimating tens of thousands of trees nationally and has spread its way to East Tennessee.

Five More Counties Quarantined for Emerald Ash Borer
(July 29, 2015) - A quarantine for Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), an invasive insect that destroys ash trees, has been expanded to include five more Tennessee counties. With EAB discovered in traps in Franklin, Marshall, Rutherford, Trousdale and Williamson counties, those areas are now under restriction for the movement of ash trees and ash tree products. EAB was confirmed in Cumberland and Bledsoe counties in June. Tennessee now has 46 counties under state and federal EAB quarantine.

Two More Counties Quarantined for Emerald Ash Borer
(July 9, 2015) - A quarantine for Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), an invasive insect that destroys ash trees, has been expanded to include two more Tennessee counties. With EAB discovered in traps in Bledsoe and Cumberland, both counties have now been added to the list of areas restricted for the movement of ash trees and ash tree products. This brings the total number of Tennessee counties under a state and federal EAB quarantine to 41.

Smokies adopts new firewood restrictions
(Jan. 11, 2015) - The Great Smoky Mountains National Park has adopted new restrictions on firewood usage. Park officials said in a statement that campgrounds will allow only heat-treated firewood that has been certified beginning in March. The policy aims to slow the spread of invasive, tree-killing insects such as the emerald ash borer.

The Nature Conservancy
  • Department of Agriculture  |  
  • Ellington Agricultural Center  |  
  • 440 Hogan Road  |  
  • Nashville, TN 37220  |  
  • (615) 837-5520  |  
  • Protect.TNForests@tn.gov