How far away from fruit tree trunk to mulch?


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I read that you should not mulch right up to the base of the trunk for fruit trees but you should mulch at least 1 foot away all around the trunk, is that correct?

If so, does the same concept apply to other plants like roses, jasmine, flower ...etc or does it only apply to fruit trees?

Thanks
 
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No you want to place the mulch all around the plant or tree, but keep off the stalk or trunk. If you need to hold the water in the ground, then you need mulch close to the trunk, but not touching the bark.
 
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You just don't want to have it touching the trunk of the tree, there's no magic number to keep away.

It does apply to all long-lived perennials, especially those with woody trunks. There are plants, such as tomato plants that this does not apply.

The reason for this, is that the bark of plants are akin to the skin of us humans, i.e. first line of defense of the immune system. If you pile mulch against the base of a tree, it traps moisture and allows things to grow, i.e. fungi/bacteria and as time goes on it breaks down the bark and gets inside the plant and also allows other things, such as ants to enter... This is also why you don't want to bury a tree too deep when planting/trans-planting -- a significant cause of tree failure is because they were planted too deep.

An analogy would be for us to wear boots 24/7, eventually your skin would breakdown and you'd become sick.
 
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I lose trees because I live on a hill and mother nature deposits her fall leaves on the uphill side of the tree. Here and there, now and again, a fungus starts in that area, rotting the root, which will make the tree topple when the wind comes and pushes the tree but there is no root to hold it.
 

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