Tree root removal

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Forum topic by mission76 posted 08-05-2010 12:14 AM 1222 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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47 posts in 3043 days

08-05-2010 12:14 AM

Figured it was worth posting this hoping there are a few guys here who also know a thing or two about trees in the natural form instead of board feet! But anyway I just bought a home and there are a lot of tree roots growing out of the ground in the backyard/side of home, some of which strech for multiple feet. It seems to me that there were two trees removed on the property and I am thinking that these roots were just left there.

But the question is..if they actually belong to live trees and I go out and cut up the sections of roots that are protuding through the lawn..will that spell disaster for the live trees? There are no trees in the immediate area and these are not small roots…some of them are like 5” diameter that span for 8’..I would think that if the roots are that big then the trees have other roots branching out and could recover from the cutting of the ones in the lawn? Can a tree really grow roots that span out 50-100’?

5 replies so far

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


17575 posts in 3096 days

#1 posted 08-05-2010 03:54 AM

Trees usually don’t have roots that big close to the surface if they are very far away, I’d cut ‘em off.

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

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51452 posts in 2900 days

#2 posted 08-05-2010 04:35 AM

I agree…if there arent any trees near by, I would cut them off.

-- Wayne - Plymouth MN

View ElmoSr's profile


241 posts in 2446 days

#3 posted 08-05-2010 02:31 PM

I have cut roots like that before on large trees and it didnt hurt them

-- ElmoSr,Ga. Life is Hard by the Yard,,,But a Cinch by the Inch

View lilredweldingrod's profile


2495 posts in 2527 days

#4 posted 08-06-2010 07:04 AM

Most tree roots only grow away from the tree as far as the limbs. Then they generally grow down looking for underground water. Some species, ie. willow, aspen, birch, china berry,etc will send roots under a drive, house etc if a lot of water is present. I had this problem with corkscrew willows and a china berry that caused damage to my driveway and garage floor and in the kitchen. They were trying to access the leach field on my septic system. I’m having trouble with my neighbors cottonwoods as well.

The big box stores have stuff that if you drill the stumps with a 1 inch drill down as deep as you can and fill the holes with lye or the other products they have , it will accelerate the decomposition of the stumps and roots.

Hope this helps, Rand

View mission76's profile


47 posts in 3043 days

#5 posted 08-06-2010 05:34 PM

Thank you for all the replies..after getting some good answers here and elsewhere I started cutting and diging them out last night. 2 1/2 hours later I finally got the first one out, 12’ long and maybe 5” diameter at some points. This thing branched out all over the place but was never more than 5-7” below the dirt. It appeared dry and dead..there was no moisture in the root when I broke it open, so I am guessing it is all from some dead or removed tree

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