Azalea Root Upheaval
I was looking at my azaleas today and I noticed that the soil around the base of one of the plants looked like it had been pushed up. In fact, the whole base area of the plant seemed to be elevated and the mulch had a clear break in the same spot. I lightly stepped on this area and the soil compressed easily. To my horror, the whole azalea moved when I did this. It seems to be like there is a void right below the surface near surface roots. The plant has been suffering from dieing branches for a year now.
I have no idea what the problem is, but I wonder if it could be one of the following:
1. Larva from japanese beetles (grubs)
2. A mole (possible eating larva)
I have problems with both of the above in the back yard, but the azaleas are in the front yard.
Thanks for any feedback you might be able to provide :o)