First let me start off by saying I am no green thumb, but I am
interested and hope to learn from the experts here!
I just purchased a house and have inherited a Liquid Amber in my front
yard that is about 8 years old. It appears to be very healthy. I have
noticed the roots on one side are coming up through the grass.
Consequently my grass is turning brown near the surface roots, about a
3' x 6' area. I assume this is due to the soil nutrients being used
up by the roots. My question is, what should I do about this problem?
Remove the dead grass, put some top soil on and re-seed? If I do this
won't the problem just happen again? Should I try removing the roots?
Any and all suggestions welcomed! Thanks.
Most likely your assumption is wrong. The grass is dying either
because it is not getting the right amount of water or because a dog
is marking it regularly, or perhaps because of some turf disease.
In terms of the grass, I do not know the best solution, but from the
tree's perspective you should finish off the grass all the way around
the tree, make sure the tree is not planted too deeply (you should see
large flares at the base of the trunk where the primary roots begin)
and mulch the soil to a depth of 3 inches. This will improve the
soil, retain moisture, moderate temperature fluctuations, and
eliminate the need to go around the trunk with a string trimmer (which
is detrimental to the tree over time). Do not remove the roots unless
you are not interested in keeping the tree (some smaller roots may be
expendable, but without more info it is impossible to say). As you
say, even if your tree survives, you will likely see more surface
roots in future.
For info on proper mulching, visit www.treesaregood.com
ISA Certified Arborist #TX-236
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