Roots need the best possible environment for their growth and function. Ways of improving the soil typically involve breaking it up so there’s more air available to the roots. Air is the first thing that’s lacking in most trees that are troubled. We use supersonic mist to “fluff up” compacted soil and add amendments, such as composted organic material.
We take soil tests to see if any nutrients are lacking and then mix in the required nutrients according to the test. Poor drainage can literally drown older trees, so we try to keep water moving and keep that rooting environment optimal. Soil management is definitely important. If there is any soil on the stem then it should be removed and the primary roots should be visible.