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trees pushing themselves up out of the ground

Hi, I live in western Canada,(prairies) zone 3. I have 3 new trees, columnar aspen and mountain ash that I planted 2 months ago, in heavy clay soil with lawn surrounding them. Our underground sprinklers water them every day. We have sunny weather, but also lots of wind and spring was cold and wet. The trees have pushed themselves up out of the ground a few inches. Why, and is this harmful to them, and what should I do about it? Thanks so much!!
Submitted by BHGPhotoContest

Hi,

Thanks for writing. Both of these trees are known to have relatively shallow root systems that like to grow along the ground instead of deep into it. So the roots may have pushed some of the soil as they grew. Or soil may have washed away from the base of the tree from your sprinklers. If the trees seem stable in the ground, I'd guess this isn't hurting them at all. You can probably add a little more soil around the base, if you want.

---Justin, Senior Garden Editor, BHG.com

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