For years, residents have been tipping leaves or compost into the ravine. Also, soil may have slumped downward. But too much accumulation around trunks isn't good for the trees.
She says, "For future health of the tree, the soil at the base should not be raised. If the soil level is raised around the tree, it makes future problems with the root system likely."
"But the normal accumulation of leaves at the base should stay--they will provide a great mulch and nutrient cycling to the existing soil."
"Some trees also have old wounds or limb stubs, and would benefit from a structural prune."
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Briana's comments are from an email she sent to a resident.
* BS Forest Ecology and Environmental Studies; Certified Arborist # WI 0661A