The Damage Caused by Volcano Mulching

Jul 18, 2018

Credit SC Public Radio

Hello Gardeners, I’m Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow.  The Kilauea Volcano is causing instantly discernable damage as it erupts in Hawaii. Whole neighborhoods have been lost to its larva flows and the vog or volcanic smog from its emissions threatens air quality. Although we don’t have volcanos to worry about in South Carolina, our urban trees, which contribute to healthier air quality for us by reducing carbon dioxide and emitting oxygen, are threatened by volcano mulching. When mulch is piled ,  sometimes up to a foot high, around the trunk of a tree, it causes multiple problems for that plant. Imagine the skin on your if you wore wet shoes and socks all day. A tree’s trunk is supposed to be in a dry environment, when it is kept moist by overzealous mulching it’s at risk of developing disease and rot, and that mulch makes a safety zone for voles.