Oak Openings has lost thousands of trees in recent years because of the emerald ash borer, a June 2010 tornado and the natural deaths of aging pine trees. While the woodlands will recover from the loss, and some areas will actually thrive with fewer trees, Metroparks is planting trees, especially along the Swan Creek floodplain.
Several thousand oaks, sycamores and American elms have been planted in the last several months. Ironically, many of the ash trees killed by the emerald ash borer were planted to replace elms killed by Dutch elm disease. The new elms are a variety that is resistant to the disease, grown at the USDA�s National Forest Service Northwest Research Station in Delaware, Ohio.