Suckers on Crabapple
I am taking responsibility for a crabapple with a vast network of suckers, previously addressed (and maybe enouraged) by lawnmower and weedeater. I spent several hours removing the shoots as well as lots of overgrown sucker bases, and found that soil has collected in the sucker network, now rising a few inches up the base of the tree. The more I dug around in the collected soil, the more chunks of sucker base I found, which I was able to break off. Although some suckers have grown up from the main roots, there is a lot of hypertrophy (and collected soil) that seems to be separate from the main roots. Is it OK to remove more of this hypertrophy? If so, how much, and how?