Mature Banyan trees in Thomas Square severely infested, will be cut down

Two mature Benjamin Banyan trees in Thomas Square will be cut down, the City and County of Honolulu announced Monday.

Arborists from the city’s Division of Urban Forestry determined the trees suffer from severe infestation of the lobate lac scale, officials said.

Attempts to eradicate the insect with pesticide and pruning have failed, according to the city.

University of Hawaii researchers and other arborists said they’ve been treating damaged trees by injecting chemicals into them.

This type of treatment is relatively new, so experts don’t know what the long-term effects are.

“To be honest with you, the treatment of lobate lac scale is quite recent. It’s not something that we had to deal with for a long time, so it’s a bit of a trial,” said Chris Dacus, city Dept. of Parks and Recreation.

Work will take place Wednesday, May 21, through Friday, May 23, to remove the trees to prevent large branch or full-tree failure. Traffic will not be affected.

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