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What happens to roots when a tree is cut down?

Oct 25


It can be difficult to decide whether to cut down a tree you love. However, sometimes it is necessary. It is possible to remove a tree that has become a nuisance or safety hazard due to falling fruit, weak wood or disease. After the tree has been cut down, you might be curious about what happens to the roots once the tree is gone. But what about the stump?


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Are tree roots able to grow after the tree has been cut?


After a tree has been cut down, it is either chipped into mulch or hauled away. The roots remain in the ground. The tree that has been cut down cannot produce enough food to support its roots. The roots may still have enough nutrients to support sprout growth from the stump or the roots. A sprout can eventually become a tree if it develops enough leaves.


It's unlikely that a tree will regrow if it doesn't produce root-sprouts. The roots will eventually die. The roots of trees such as maples, oaks and pines will eventually decompose. Some tree species, however, will sprout aggressively from their roots even after they are removed and the stump is ground up. Because of their rapid spread, these tree species can be considered invasive. Trees such as elms and ficus can be grown back from their roots. It is a general rule that fast-growing trees can be regrown from roots. Slow-growing trees cannot.

How can you completely cut the root system?

To kill the root system faster than just cutting it, you can use herbicides prior to removing the tree. You can do this by using the herbicide to cut notches into the trunk that are just deeper than the bark. The herbicide label calls these frills. The goal is to get to the phloem, which is under the bark. The phloem, which is the tissue that carries food from leaves to roots, is what you want to do. This is best done in autumn. However, it can also be done well in summer. It is essential that the leaves produce food, which is being transferred to the roots via the phloem. This is why you should look for herbicides that are labeled for this purpose. The tree might be cut a few weeks after the application of the herbicide.


Older sewer systems made of tiles or tarpaper rolled into pipe are more prone to root problems. These systems are susceptible to leakage, which attracts roots to the pipes and gives them a way to enter the pipe. The root problems associated with plastic sewer pipes are less common as they are more durable and can be properly installed. However, there is still the possibility that roots could grow alongside the pipe. The root may grow in diameter and crush the pipe, cracking it and allowing for leakage and root access into the pipe.