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Basal Work

Basal Work - Arbor Docs Professional Tree Care Service

Basal work, or root flare excavation, is the process of removing soil from the area immediately surrounding the trunk of the tree to check for root deterioration,girdling roots, wires, wire or poly rope left over from planting, clay-pot syndrome, over-crowded planting,dense ground cover or excessive soil accumulation. Symptoms of girdling can be exhibited as:

  • No obvious root flares
  • Premature defoliation in the fall
  • Delayed leaf set in the spring
  • Nutrient deficiencies
  • Poor elongation or stunted growth

Basal work is needed to identify and correct the problem.  All of the preceding conditions, which are preventable, ultimately affect the function of the vascular system. Compromising the vascular system can damage or kill the tree. When correcting the problem, care should be taken not to inflict further damage to the tree. If the flare is not visible, it is essential to excavate the soil immediately around the trunk or cut the ground cover back until it is visible. Excessively thick ground cover is often mistakenly overlooked as a contributor to the problems a tree may be having. The moisture in the soil is absorbed passively by the bark. The accumulation of soil or ground cover around the trunk inhibits normal gaseous exchange, promotes deterioration and decay of the trunk tissue and encourages the development of roots that ultimately girdle the tree. We use a high-pressure air spade to accomplish this so as not to damage any roots during the excavation process.

The recognition of these problems is a part of our site visit. Our trained staff will properly supervise the correction of these problems. Do you have trees that need Basal Work?  Contact us for an estimate.

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To schedule a consultation with one of our certified arborists, please call us at (972)422-4560 Or you can email your request to

Dallas Service Area
ArborDocs provides professional tree services for the surrounding Dallas/Ft. Worth area, including:
  • Dallas
  • Highland Park
  • Plano
  • Allen
  • Richardson
  • Frisco
  • Lewisville
  • Carrollton
  • Farmers Branch
  • Coppell
  • Wylie
  • Rowlett
  • Garland

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