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Wood Acres Tree Specialists
1 Metropolitan Court, Gaithersburg, MD 20878
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Our tree crews are highly skilled and have years of experience in the tree care industry. Our field crews attend safety programs and review safety guidelines as provided by the Tree Care Industry Association.
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Improper Mulching Techniques – The Mulch Volcano

improper tree mulching

The Mulch Volcano

This photo shows improper mulching. ?This tree has had mulch placed at the base of the tree since it was installed. ?The mulch was piled that way to help protect an improperly planted tree.

One of the problems with mulch volcanoes is that bark is designed to be exposed to air. ?When it is covered with mulch, then the bark cannot dry properly and that is a great way for a disease and rot to attack the lower stem of a tree. ?Another problem of mulch volcanoes is that roots can grow inside the mulch. ?Since the roots are not in the soil where they would be properly insulated, they are more susceptible to drying out and dying, which can stress a tree.

This tree was doomed from the start when it was not planted properly. ?Half of the root ball of this tree was planted above ground, which led to the mulch volcano trying to protect the exposed root system. ?Trees can survive planted this way, but they won’t thrive and it makes them more susceptible to problems down the road. ?With such a mature tree, these problems cannot be fixed. ?If your tree is recently planted, it can be fixed by replanting at proper levels and applying a thin layer of mulch.

Be sure to watch your landscapers when they plant trees. ?Most professional landscapers plant at proper levels, but if the landscapers are not knowledgeable, you may be dealing with a tree that requires a lot more maintenance.

For expert advice about your trees contact the certified arborists at Wood Acres Tree Specialists.

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Are All Hollow Trees Hazardous?

Hollow Tree

Some people may look at this stump and conclude right away that it is a hazard. ?An arborist may look at this stump and say “not so fast.” ?This tree looks scary, but whether or not this tree is a hazard, is based on the amount of solid wood that surrounds the area of decay.

A good rule of thumb is that a tree needs 1-inch or more of sound wood for each 6-inches of stem diameter. ?There are other factors involved in determining how hazardous a tree is, but that 1-inch per 6-inches is a good place to start.

An arborist can use a resistograph to help measure the area of decay inside the tree. ?If you suspect that you have a hollow tree, before you automatically remove it, talk to your arborist and ask if he can investigate the area of decay. Contact Wood Acres Tree Specialists, certified artborists for a thorough analysis of your trees.?

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Split Stems in Trees

If you have a tree with co-dominant stems and you see those stems separate like these two are doing, then the tree should be removed as soon as possible. ??Cabling systems can be installed in trees with multiple stems to help reduce the risk of this happening, but the cables need to be installed before the stems start to fail. This tree, which is an ailanthus, is a very fast growing species. The faster the growth rate of the tree, the weaker the bonds of the wood are and that increases the risk of failure. Contact Wood Acres Tree Specialists to inspect your trees.

tree with split stems

Tree with split stems

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