Patmore Ash dying?

(Question)

I live in zone 1 and I’ve had a Patmore Ash for ten years and this spring it did not produce leaves but has multiple suckers with lots of leaves.  Is it dying?

(Answer)

Patmore Ash or Fraxinus pennsylvanica ‘Patmore’ is a male green Ash cultivar that was discovered as a chance seedling (a mutation of unknown parent plants) in Vegreville, Alberta in 1967.  It has been cultivated and later been introduced to the nursery trade.  The tree is very hardy and tolerant of adverse growing conditions.  Its Canadian hardiness is mostly given as Zone 2, so you may be pushing the limits with this one.

The description you give of your tree indicates that the main tree is dead, but the root crown is still alive and able to produce all the suckers.  Given your hardiness zone and the severe winter we had, your tree may have simply frozen to death.  If low temperatures caused the only damage to the tree, one of the suckers could grow back to a sizeable tree over the years.  Choose and keep one of the strongest & straightest suckers and prune away the rest in the hopes that you will be able to re-juvinate the root crown into a new tree.

However, if you live in Ontario, you might just be at the very northern edge of where the Emerald Ash Borer wreaks havoc and kills trees within 2-5 years after infestation period.  The following link shows the area regulated for the Emerald Ash Borer, which means that it is prohibited to remove ash tree material and firewood from the designated area without prior permission of the Canadian Food Inspection agency to prevent the spread of this devastating pest.

https://www.inspection.gc.ca/plants/plant-protection/insects/emerald-ash-borer/areas-regulated/eng/1347625322705/1367860339942

To read more about Emerald Ash Borer please see this previous post from our website:

https://www.torontomastergardeners.ca/index.php/askagardener/emerald-ash-borer/

 

I hope this information is helpful to you.