Mary Christine Nestor wrote:My husband in his helpfulness put about a foot or more of hardwood wood chip mulch around my fig trees last fall when I wasn't looking. When I started moving some of it out of the way, the figs had put out roots trying to get closer to the surface. Many trees have shallow roots that feed on nutrients closer to the surface and need oxygen as well. A tree can be smothered if too much is piled on. I've shared in an earlier post that my problem with the wood chip approach is it's appeal to carpenter ants. Between firewood and wood chips we have been inundated with the little buggers.