Mulching Old Maples

Fincastle, VA


Thanks for this forum. I am new here and until recently have not had the time to care for my yard in the manner it deserves. But I'm starting now. I don't know much about plants and trees so I'll need some guidance. I have two very old maple trees in my yard. They appear healthy and were recently professionally trimmed for the second time in 25 years. I would like to provide some fresh soil around their base but I recall an old local farmer friend saying you can't put too much soil around the base of a tree. Can someone advise me please? I appreciate any advice! Thank you!

I live in southwest Virginia, planting zone 6. We have a lot of clay in our soil; both trees are on a gradual slope.

Thanks very much!

central, NJ(Zone 6b)

It's not advisable to add soil on top of tree roots," Changes in soil depth around trees can also cause injury to root systems. The addition of only 4 to 6 inches of soil over a root zone drastically reduces the amount of oxygen and water available to the roots"
you can mulch(shredded leaves are great) about 2" depth around a tree but do not mound it up to the trunk keep a space around the trunk of about 12"

Fincastle, VA

Thank you very much! I appreciate that information. I'll have plenty of leaves in a few weeks! These beautiful trees turn my yard bright autumn orange every year.

Thanks for your advice.

central, NJ(Zone 6b)

You're welcome

Kelso, WA

Another thing you can do is aerate around the tree if possible, and then add some of your organic mulch such as leaves or bark. I would suggest this to help give those roots some air and something new to feed on.

Good Luck!

Kigi Nursery & Landscaping

St Louis, MO

KIgiTrees' advice is excellent, Nancy, as is flowAjan's

Why did you want to add soil under the trees? Were you looking for the effect of compost/mulch?

And, it could depend on which maple you have -- hardwood vs. silver maple, for example.

Tell us a bit more about what prompted you to think about doing this. You might get some further lovely answers. :-)

(I am in zone 6, as well) :-)

Where I live, municipalities have free compost piles or mulch piles. That might be true in your area, as well.

Looking forward to hearing more about your gardening/landscape fun!

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