Root Flare

Discussion in 'Maples' started by Connor Sullivan, Nov 4, 2020.

  1. Connor Sullivan

    Connor Sullivan Member

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    Hello everyone,

    I had a question about exposing the root flare for maples. It seems like there is a good chance a lot of maples are planted improperly or mulched too high at nurseries.

    My Shishigashira came from the nursery with the classic telephone pole, the root flare was about 1.5” buried, so after a little excavation I found it. It looks like the root flare branches out only on one side on my Mikawa Yatsubusa?

    Does this look correct/ any tips?
     

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  2. Acerholic

    Acerholic Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout Maple Society

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    @Connor Sullivan good evening Connor, yes I agree so many nurseries bury trees far too deeply and when people get it home to plant they automatically follow the planting depth.
    What you have done is correct in exposing the root flare, my only concern is that you don't create a dip/ bowl area where water will pool around the base of the tree.
    A mound from the flare sloping away from the trunk will be a better idea. Mulching is not a problem around this area as long as it is not up to the trunk and touching it.
    Regarding only on one side, you will find it does have roots all around your Mikawa Yatsabusa at different levels. But as you had already planted at the lower depth this will very difficult to remedy, unless you lift and re plant.
    But if it were me, I think I would leave it as it is now, as the trunk looks fine.
     
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  3. Connor Sullivan

    Connor Sullivan Member

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    Thanks as always @Acerholic !

    So if I’m understanding you correctly, in the case of my Mikawa, sometimes the root flare isn’t evenly flaring out all around the tree at the same level? It can have roots/flares at different depths?

    My friend who the works for the city of Olympia Washington as an urban forester said that root girdling isn’t something he sees often but I read about it a lot online.

    Also, trunk rot can be a issue with very high mulching or too deeply planted, is that a issue you see a lot? I would really prefer not to dig up the Mikawa Yatsubusa and just hope it good enough.
     
  4. Connor Sullivan

    Connor Sullivan Member

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    As the tree grows, will the bigger woody roots and flare grow up out of the soil level and ultimately correct itself over time? This being a situation where the tree is planted at about 75% of the correct ground level.

    I would imagine a very deeply planted tree not being able to correct itself with time and seeing eventual trunk rot.
     
  5. Acerholic

    Acerholic Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout Maple Society

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    @Connor Sullivan good morning Connor sorry for not replying last night, time differance and all that, Lol.
    That is correct the roots especially when planted too deeply by nurseries or garden centres etc will be at different levels. I don't see evidence of girdling with your tree so I do not believe you have this problem. Girdling often occurs from incorrect planting, I always dig a square hole and tease the roots out after removing from a pot. I have never had the roots girdle any of my trees.
    Regarding mulching, I have seen mulching so deep that it covers the trunk up to a foot of the trunk of the tree. This will cause the trunk to rot. So just cover around the base lightly to help conserve moisture during hot spells.
    The roots will not normally grow upwards once planted, on a maple there natural habit is outwards rather than down. They are shallow rooting trees. This is where the bad habit of deep mulching came in by people trying to protect their trees.
    So IMO Connor, leave your Mikawa Yatsabusa as it is but ensure you don't have the bowl effect around the base.
    Hope thats of help.
     

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