It’s not always the canopy that needs the most work when doing tree care. With this blood orange tree (Citrus x sinensis) the majority of the work I did was clearing out and pruning the root zone, rather than the canopy. I did remove and reduce some branches that had been pruned improperly in the past to encourage faster healing. (Note: above, notice the difference at the base of the tree.)
Roots need air to breathe so soil should not go above the top-most roots of the tree. If the soil is above the root crown, this can lead to rot at the base and encourage or hide girdling roots like in the picture above. Once I removed the soil I was able to see these dangerous roots that have the potential to strangle a tree over time. I removed these roots before they caused too much damage and this tree will now have plenty of room to grow and thrive. This is a great example of why having your tree planted by a professional is important for its long-term health.