Q. What diameter of lawn should be removed from around a shade tree trunk? I have silver maple and pin oak now 10-15 ft high, growing to full size.
I recall experiments at Bartlett that showed that trees benefited from mulching up to the drip line. However, that is impractical and not as aesthetically pleasing than using a smaller mulch area. Besides the health of the tree, mulching helps to prevent damage to the bark and limbs. A mulch area about four feet in diameter should suffice and be aesthetically pleasing. Two to three inches of mulch is optimum and do not cover the bark of the tree with mulch. Mulch volcanoes should be avoided as they cause a variety of problems including girdling of the roots.