Here are some tips on how to protect the health and vitality of trees

Don’t…

✗  Park under trees. This compacts the soil and can cause root damage which may destabilise a tree.
✗  Place structures in trees. Cubby houses, ladders and swings can stress a tree. In response it may shed limbs making it unsafe for users.
✗  Cut away roots to make way for new structures or service lines. This can affect the life span of the tree.
✗  Install impervious (hard) surfaces over the base of a tree and its root system. This can also damage or destabilise a tree.

Do…

✔  Retain groups of trees. Trees communicate with each other underground through fungal networks. Nearby trees can receive distress signals and modify their behaviour based on the information that they receive.
✔  Design separation distances between trees and structures (including driveway crossings). Go online to work out root and tree protections zones (RPZ and TPZ). If design choices are limited, consider other options such as the installation of a root barrier system or tree relocation. 
✔  Before construction starts place barriers around the dripline of a tree so that there is minimal interference from heavy vehicles, grading or digging. 
✔  In periods of drought, water the ground from the base out to where the branches stop.
✔  Mulch out - not up. Place a 10-15cm thick layer of mulch (no more than the heal of your hand) around trees to keep moisture and encourage beneficial relationships between tree roots, invertebrates, and tree fungi. Keep mulch at least 15-20cm away from the base of the tree as this can lead to decay.

Alert:

If you are using mulch make sure that you know where it has come from. There are pockets of fungus in the Mountains that are deadly to trees. Although spread is usually through root to root, diseases can transfer through the dispersal of wood chips. 

Links - Healthy Tree Tip Videos

Ep 4 – Pruning
https://youtu.be/3v39fE3BvqA

Ep 2 – Mulch
https://youtu.be/bkbAdKNbl-4

Ep 6 – In the home garden
https://youtu.be/vd48O9XPVAU

Wildplant Rescue volunteers work on bushland blocks to rescue ground covers and low-growing wildplants that are difficult to propagate. For further information go: to www.wildplantrescue.org.au