We live in Minnesota and have linden trees planted in small spaces in a town...

Asked October 28, 2014, 9:41 PM EDT

We live in Minnesota and have linden trees planted in small spaces in a town home community. An arborist has informed us that the trees are not healthy and they are "girdled" at the base of the tree. They have recommended air spading to reduce this constriction. Will this help the problem? The trees were planted in spaces that are too small but the neighbors do not want them replaced. If this would be helpful, is there a good time of year to do this air spading?

Minnesota tree health

3 Responses

Experienced tree care professionals can use air spades to loosen soil and expose tree roots to evaluate their condition and correct deformities. These tools are also used to prepare trees for transplanting. The following website illustrates the process. Be sure to read the explanatory notes under the video. The procedure may improve the trees' health and prolong their lives, but the unfavorable growing site will be a liability in the long run. Apparently the work can be done any time the ground isn't frozen, but ask the arborist to be sure.

Air Spade
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ym3lYJnFA1A

Learn more here:
http://blogs.extension.org/gardenprofessors/2009/09/28/baring-it-all-again/

Do you have an idea what the ideal space around a Linden would be? The minimum space?

Thank you!

The ideal space would not confine the roots. The root spread can be two or three times the width of the canopy. How much root space would be ideal depends upon the kind of linden and its normal height and spread at maturity.

Learn more here:
http://www.mortonarb.org/trees-plants/tree-and-plant-advice/horticulture-care/tree-root-problems