If the roots of trees or some plants is spoiling the look of your lawn, it seems obvious to get rid of those in some manner. But the smart solution would be to be cautious when you are trying to cut the roots of a tree.
I don’t wanna tell you the importance of trees in our environment here, neither I am going to tell you how important roots are for a tree.
But, there is definitely a way to clean down on those roots and therefore clean your lawn and make it look better without destroying or harming that tree/plant with roots.
There are some factors which determine whether it’s safe to cut the roots of the tree or not. They are the condition of the soil, width of the trunk, and the tree’s age.
Conditions of Soil and Tree’s Age
It is really important to determine and analyse the condition of the soil and the health of the tree before cutting the roots of the tree. I talked to my friend Joseph Thompson, who provides Tree Cutting and Removal services in San Bernardino, California and he told me that if the soil is shallow, or if the soil drains slowly, tree roots may grow closer to the surface.
When the soil is well-drained, the roots are deeper into the soil. He told me that there are more chances of tree getting harmed if you decide to cut it’s roots when the condition of the soil is shallow or not well-drained.
Healthy trees kind of compensates lose of roots by shedding some unwanted branches. But, if the health of the tree is not that good, it may not be to handle the damage caused by loss of some of it’s roots.
Signs of an unhealthy tree include holes in the trunk, mushrooms growing near the base or on the tree itself, missing bark and large dead branches.
If you would like to ask Joseph more in-detail about the trees and plants in your lawn, you can contact him on his company’s Facebook page.
Distance to cut Tree Roots
I would recommend you to start cutting roots of a tree atleast at the distance of 5 times the size of the trunk of the tree. So, for example, if the trunk of a tree is 7 inches wide, you should cut the roots at a distance of 35 inches.
The farther from the trunk, the safer it is to cut the roots.
How to choose which tree roots to cut?
Ideally, it’s best to cut the thinnest and weakest roots first. Avoid cutting thick roots as thick ones are the major roots of a tree and may damage the tree.
You need to be very careful about this. Cutting even one major root can prove to be pretty harmful.
Things Needed in this Task
- Measuring Tape
- Root Saw
- Sod or Grass seed
- Pruning shears
- Small spade or shovel
How to cut the roots of the tree?
Choose a point where a side root grows downward. Once you get that point, cut the tree roots with a sharp saw. Remove the grass and soil from around the root using the sharp lawn spades. Sterilize the saw by wiping the blade with a rag soaked in rubbing alcohol.
Repeat the process and cut the root at the point where the side-root grows downward from that point. You may have to fill the gaps by extra soil and reseed any bare spots in the soil.
After completing the root cutting process, water the tree well.