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- Expose root flares of trees planted too deep.
- Expose root flares of trees covered with fill dirt.
- Expose root flares and root structure 6” to 18” below grade for base investigation.
- Expose root flares for Macro Injections.
- Digging trenches without cutting roots or concrete.
What is an Air Spade?
An Air Spade is a hand-held soil excavation tool connected to a large air compressor. A high-pressure stream of air is channeled through a nozzle which then breaks soil into smaller particles and similar to vacuum excavation which uses water instead of air, it does not harm the ground, the tree roots or any other underground utilities or pipes. Traditionally arborists have only been able to safely examine trees parts that are above the ground however the Air Spade enables arborists to examine the root flare – that part of the trunk that converges into root tissue. Revealing the root flare can provide an arborist with valuable evidence regarding the overall wellbeing of the tree. It is a noisy and dirty process but is a very effective and efficient way to uncover tree roots.
Diagnosing Tree Root Issues
If an arborist suspects that a tree’s roots may be decaying, using an Air Spade is the quickest and safest way to confirm or rule out their suspicions. Root decay needs to be quickly treated as if left untreated it will certainly cause the tree’s health to decline and ultimately fail. There are a number of reasons why roots may decay including:
- Root Rot: a disease that attacks roots growing in damp or wet soil
- Pest Infestation
- Soil Fungus
The Air Spade is a tool that can tell the arborist if anything around the tree base looks unhealthy. If extra soil has been added around the base of a tree, then this can have a disagreeable consequence on the tree’s well-being. The arborist can inspect a bare root flare and determine if structural roots show signs of decline or decay.