FIWMD – Fishers Island Conservancy Buffer Project, Step 1: Eradicate Invasive Tree of Heaven to Combat Invading Lantern Fly

Fishers Island Waste Management District and FI Conservancy are collaborating on a Native Plant Buffer along the northern edge of the Compost Station property to mitigate noise, dust, and visual clutter and simultaneously combat the propagation of invasive species.

The first step has been to remove 15 devilishly invasive Trees of Heaven (Ailanthus altissima) ranging from 8” to 24” in diameter. Subsequent work will include additional de-vining and invasive removal, followed by sitework and native planting.

The Tree of Heaven is the preferred home of the invading Lantern Fly, and removing the trees appears to significantly hamper the insect’s ability to gain a foothold. Please note, if site permissions allow, experts recommend painting stumps with systemic herbicide (Garlon Ultra or Garlon 4) immediately after cutting to prevent the tree from sending up roots elsewhere.

On-site disposal of tree/larvae:

  • burn
  • seal plant material in heavyweight black plastic bag until larvae/seeds are destroyed
  • DO NOT add to your home brush or compost piles at these could aid spread

FIWMD Compost Station disposal of tree/larvae:

  • contain material for travel to minimize spread
  • notify attendant and follow instructions for depositing material
  • FIWMD adds the material to a designated windrow that reaches sufficient temperatures to kill Tree of Heaven seeds and Lantern Fly larvae

Resource Links

PennState Extension
Spotted Lanternfly Management Guide

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation
Spotted Lanternfly

Western New York Partnership for Regional Invasive Species Management (PRISM)
Tree of Heaven

Spotted Lanternfly