Serviceberry Tree With Many Stems Is Tipping Over

Question From: D. Price - Omaha, Nebraska, United States
Q: We have a multi-stem serviceberry tree that is about 12 years old. It was planted near the edge of a flower bed with turf growing against the bed. Over the years the tree has grown roots above ground into the center of the flower bed, and has also begun to lean over the same direction. Today, a storm blew the tree, tipping it some more.. The soil is lifted at the base, but the root system seems to still be intact. Can we save the tree by uprighting and staking it? Perhaps we could cut off the trunk that is leaning the farthest and make the rest a more upright tree.

A: I had the same thing happen to a Rose of Sharon. I would try and right it and stake it. If you choose to "half" the tree, I would have a certified arbortist take a look it it. After righting it I would layer an inch or so of compost over the surface of the soil and then mulch with 3 inches of organic material. Do be sure to keep it watered this year. Best And Happy Yardening, Nancy.