Are you wondering why your tree has been in the ground for several years and still hasn’t grown and the leaves are turning yellow? Chances are it’s been planted too deeply. Look for the place on the tree trunk where it sweeps out from the trunk into the ground. On large, established trees this is very easy to find, trees fresh from the nursery have the same “root flare” but you usually need to look more closely at them. Look at the first photo below of a Dallas landscape installation and everything looks fine, right? A nice oak tree planted in a tree ring. If you look closely you’ll see the trunk goes straight into the ground with no sign of a flare. Take a look at the second photo of the same tree after we removed the tree ring and you’ll see the soil was piled several inches above the root flare. Piling dirt or mulch above the root flare rots the trunk off of the tree will stunt and eventually kill the tree. This is one of the most common mistakes I see in landscapes.