Walking around my neighborhood the other week, I saw these relatively mature ornamental cherry trees in the parking strip.
I was curious about the planter boxes, which are a bit weathered and coming apart at some of the corners. I imagine the intention was to help the trees get a good initial start in an area where soil compaction is usually high. There is nothing (at least currently) planted underneath, so that doesn’t seem to have been the plan.
The trees, bare of their leaves, had been recently mulched and seemed to be tucked in snugly for their winter nap. Some of the claims to fame for mulching include insulation, nutrient supply, weed control, water conservation and disease suppression (per Linda Chalker-Scott’s “The Informed Gardener.”)
When mulching trees, I have read that it’s a good idea to keep the mulch away from the root crown. What do you think, did this gardener do it correctly or is it too close to the crown? I have to admit in advance that I don’t know the answer! Do you mulch your trees? If so, what material do you use? How have they fared?