The annual elm tree pruning ban has come to an end across Saskatchewan.
A province-wide ban for pruning elm trees to help reduce the spread of Dutch elm disease (DED) ended on Sept. 1.
It is in place each year from April 1 to Aug. 31 to ensure that elm bark beetles, which spread the disease, are not attracted to freshly pruned trees when the insects are most active.
DED has killed thousands of elm trees in Canada, according to City of Saskatoon officials. They noted it was first discovered in Saskatchewan in 1981 and continues to be found in more areas throughout the province.
Regular pruning outside the ban period helps keep elm trees healthier and less vulnerable to all types of diseases, including DED.
Under Saskatchewan law, commercial pruners must complete a recognized training program or be under the supervision of someone who has completed one.
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Provincial regulations also restrict elm wood storage, especially firewood, as it is a common habitat for the elm bark beetle.
For more information, people can contact their local municipality or the Ministry of Environment at 1-800-567-4224.