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Bumpy over the roots!!!

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by gogetter, Jun 26, 2002.

  1. gogetter

    gogetter Banned
    Posts: 3,256

    I picked up a new lawn a couple weeks ago. Nice lawn except around the trees. Big roots sticking out of the ground extending as much as 7 or 8 feet away from the tree.
    These roots are throwing my mower (36" exmark metro) around like a rag doll!!! I have to come to a slow crawl when going over them to avoid bouncing all over the place which results in an uneven cut. It's a real PITA.

    If they only extended 2' out, I'd suggest mulch rings to the customer, but it wouldn't help with these.

    I don't imagine there's anything I can really do about it, but thought if I griped here it would make me feel better :blob2:
  2. sbvfd592

    sbvfd592 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 668

    cover them with dirt or cut the off i dont think some small feeder roots will do anthing if you cut them out but i cant see them so i donk know
  3. gogetter

    gogetter Banned
    Posts: 3,256

    There's like 5 or 6 large trees with this problem, so to cover them with dirt and seed the areas would really disrupt the lawn. We're talking like 7 or 8 foot diameter around each tree.

    Grinding them down level to the ground was a thought, but I'd probably want to check with a tree guy as to the affect this could have on the trees.

    The other problem is that this is MY complaint, not the customers.
    In other words, the customer probably couldn't care less about these roots so isn't likely to pay me to do anything about them.

    Oh well, probably just have to suck it up and deal with it. The grass grows right up to the trees (not bare or thin like under some trees) so it looks fine, just hard to cut.

    Hopefully the future of mowers includes full suspension! :D
  4. Cut them off NO, don't

    Those roots extend to about the line of where the branches end, I think they call it the crown line I guess.

    As they get bigger they have no where to grow but get bigger in diamiter.

    Only thing possable to solve the problem is to bring in dirt and relevel it.
  5. TLS

    TLS LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,940


    Your describing my entire front yard, and about 10 of my customers lawns!

    Smooth lawns are hard to come by. When you get one, it only makes the others look rough!
  6. captdevo

    captdevo LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 932

    do not grind or cut unless you want to kill the tree......

    if you do cover them, do not cover more than 1" at first, then wait 3-6 months and add another inch or two, as you could smother the tree.

    can you add enough soil to make the roots level?

    i would suggest making beds around the trees, add looks and value to the property and $$$$ in your pocket....
  7. jhawk71

    jhawk71 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 184

    I have the same problem in my own yard. But instaed of a couple try like 10-15. I have considered laying soil but i just thought that it would make the yard even more uneven. You mean to lay soil up around the tree and roots or to lay a 1-3 "of soil over the whole yard?
  8. gogetter

    gogetter Banned
    Posts: 3,256

    Thanks for the replies guys, but as I said, the customer isn't likely to spend the money to have anything done. The roots aren't a problem for her, just for the guy cutting it.

    I would suggest planting beds to her, but she hasn't even paid her May bill yet and it only had one cut on it (she's new)!! LOL!

    Thanks anyway though.
  9. captdevo

    captdevo LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 932

    just up to the tree and to the top of the roots, then gradually taper it down to the rest of the lawn

    bedding plants are a cheap fix, try talking them into wildflower seeds...nice and cheap, but it sounds as though you may continue to have a bumpy ride in store for you.

    i had a property down south that had alot of live oak roots and the customer had no extra funds, so i got permission to dump my clippings and leaves around the trees and compost them into beds.....just a thought.....
  10. Vibe Ray

    Vibe Ray LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 785

    Ok....I don't know a lot about trees yet (key word yet! :) ), but I believe I have read or heard b4 that IF a tree is properly maintained and fertilized and everything else I don't know of....the the roots will never surface. (In fact, I think it was in a "Turf Magazine"?) So maybe if we kept our trees fertilized and what-not, then we wouldn't ever have this problem. Now I don't know if this could possibly be retro--active and take care of already present problems, but at least it may minimize future occurences or keep current ones in check? Next, what about trimming a tree back in an effort to reduce it's "drip line" (or whatever) and possibly help in some way, cuz this is supposedly where the roots extend to.

    Just my 2ยข and pure speculation

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