roots problem

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by eliahwoodcutter, Sep 23, 2005.

  1. eliahwoodcutter

    eliahwoodcutter LawnSite Member
    Posts: 41

    i need your help guys!!---please
    one of my customers has a very bad yard . and that because it has a lot of roots from trees . like every body knows if you cut the roots the tree it will die. now question is - can i cover it with lots of top soil and then seed it???
    some tree experts told me that tree rots suck all the water from the Grass...
    i am just confused, should i remove the roots or try to cover them.
    any advise it will be appreciate!!!

  2. GFTC

    GFTC LawnSite Member
    Posts: 104

    Do not add soil.Raising the grade can be detrimental to the trees as well. Offer to mulch the area where the roots are exposed. The tree will thank you for it.
  3. eliahwoodcutter

    eliahwoodcutter LawnSite Member
    Posts: 41

    i was thinking about mulching the area , but it is kind of to big
  4. GFTC

    GFTC LawnSite Member
    Posts: 104

    Here's a Sweetgum that I mulched last week. This area was 30' in diameter. You can make it work if the customer is willing. This is very beneficial for the tree.





  5. EagleLandscape

    EagleLandscape LawnSite Platinum Member
    Male, from Garland, Texas
    Posts: 4,347

    First off, its not the roots that suck up the water, its the root hairs. Grass roots don't grow very deep, so they are gonna get first shot at the water before the root hairs of the tree gets to it. If there are alot of roots exposed, it could just be the root growth pattern of the tree. What kinda of tree is it? You can put topsoil and whatnot on top of the roots, but before you do that, please post a picture and I'll tell you what your options are.
  6. EagleLandscape

    EagleLandscape LawnSite Platinum Member
    Male, from Garland, Texas
    Posts: 4,347

    If you are not planting anything under that sweet gum, I will tell you that is absolutely one of the ugliest things I have ever seen in my life. Very unattractive.
  7. sheshovel

    sheshovel LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,112

    I don't think it is ugly at all and mulching is the best answer to this guys problem...You DO NOT add soil around or over the rootzone of a mature tree because it smothers the roots and they can't "breath".Growing a lawn under lots of tree's with roots exposed is not an easy thing to do.
    mabey keep parts of the lawn that are growing well and mulching the rest is your best bet.Need a pic
  8. GFTC

    GFTC LawnSite Member
    Posts: 104

    Planting in that area would defeat the purpose of mulching that area, to reduce competition for nutrients in that area. Let me guess, you're one of those landscapers who thinks mulch volcanoes are beneficial for the tree? Or you just don't care about the health of the trees on someones property as long as it looks good.
  9. TennisBum

    TennisBum LawnSite Member
    Posts: 185

    I think it looks good. :waving:
  10. freddyc

    freddyc LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 578

    this is a tree I removed a few weeks ago. I know the oic is a little dark, but if you look close, there is a ctually a double root ball about 3ft apart.

    This was a maple about 8" in diameter.

    It was located on a small slope and about ten yeas ago, the area was filled with sand as a shortcut leveling procedure.

    In general, about 1-1.5 ft of sand was piled around an existing tree, and for the last ten years or so, it appears that the leaves from that tree and many adjacent trees built up a compost/topsoil. A second rootball grew out into the sandy area and both root systems were very healthy. There was a little scrub grass growing around the tree when I started.

    The tree had 2 very healthy root systems and was about 25' tall. It had a 3" offshoot branch that was about 18 ft tall.

    Although I don't agree with adding topsoil over existinbg tree roots in general, this is living proof that it can be done and a tree can survive it and thrive.

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