Why aerate soil around trees with an air spade?
March 29, 2013
In our heavy clay soils here in North Texas, soil compaction is a big problem for our landscape plantings and trees. Soil can build up around the base of your trees, covering the root flares. This can lead to problems with decay around the base of your tree. Trees with buried root flares are also more susceptible to pests and diseases due to overall stress. Soil around the base of the tree tends to hide girdling roots that are very damaging to your trees and can often lead to their death.
Excess soils should be removed from the base of trees, however it must be done carefully so as not to damage the root system. Our professional arborists here at Preservation Tree use specialized pneumatic air spades to remove the soil with the least amount of root damage. Pneumatic air is used to fracture and aerate heavy soils and allow better air and water circulation in the soil around the tree. Moving the soil away from the base of the tree can also assist an arborist in assessing the overall health of the tree. This method can also be used for trenching within root zones and for incorporating soil mixes into beds within tree root zones. Only trained professionals using the appropriate safety gear should operate this kind of equipment.
Before pneumatic soil removal, the soil around the base of the tree will need to be moistened a couple of days before excavation. Grass that is growing up to the base of the trunk should be removed and any plants to be kept should be carefully transplanted. Any fragile property near the work site should be moved, or will be protected with tarps. The arborist will then begin using the air spade to uncover the tree’s root flare. Once the appropriate amount of soil has been excavated, the crew will begin to remove any existing girdling roots.
Pneumatic air removal of soil can be highly beneficial for the overall health of trees that were initially planted too low or now have compacted soil built up around the base of the trunk. It also relieves compaction due to construction, poor soil structure and over watering. And again, it also gives the arborist a chance to discover and remove damaging girdling roots.
This work can be performed any time of the year so don’t hesitate to give us a call. It’s a great way to give your trees the best chance at a healthy life! Read more about our Root Flare Exposure services. firstname.lastname@example.org 214.528.2266 or 817.581.4502