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Flowering crab apple

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by Nancy Huntington LI, NY on May 18, 2006 05:10 AM
I recently planted a young 6' pink flowering crab apple tree out in my front lawn. After looking at it for a couple of weeks I decided "some day" after I get the rest of my gardens off for the growing season, I would like to plant a small garden underneath it to anchor the crabapple into the landscape. My question is: If I mound topsoil under it, it will bury the tree deeper than was suggested on the planting instructions, and the trunk/bark will be covered a few more inches. Is this going to harm the tree? Should I not put any soil at the base of the tree? Any advice for the worried [dunno] beginner! Thank you.

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Nancy
by johnCT on May 18, 2006 06:28 AM
Yes, it defnitely will harm the tree if you raise the soil level high enough. It could kill it. If you just recently planted it you can dig it up and re-plant it after you mound up the soil the way you like it.

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John - Zone 6
by The Plant Doc on May 18, 2006 04:22 PM
The bark above the ground is different then what is below the ground on a tree or shrub. What is naturally covered with soil is water proof what is above the ground is not. If you place a plant too deep or even mound mulch up too high around the tree's base over time the bark will begin to rot, and eventually kill the tree.

What you can do is start at the base of the tree and work your way out getting deeper as you go. Or you can put a small shallow ring of mulch around the tree and plant your flowers outside of the mulch. If you are planning on using annuals, something like impatiens will bush out and still have the same appearance of being tight to the tree after a few weeks of growth. [Smile]

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Mike Maier
aka
The Plant Doc
by tamara on May 19, 2006 12:33 AM
I have a fair size flower island around my crabapple tree which was added after the tree was planted at level ground. I made the flower bed raised. All I did was taper it in and around the crabapple tree so that it wasn't buried any deeper. There is a hollow around the base of the tree, it looks o.k.

What variety of crabapple did you purchase?

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