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Introduction to root growth

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Roots are generally not as deep as you might think, and they extend way beyond the edge of the branches. There can be deep roots on some trees under the trunk and under the canopy of the tree. This occurs primarily when soil is well drained. I have seen roots as deep as 80 feet under soil surface. The majority of roots are in the top 2 to 4 feet of the soil surface. Roots are typically above the water table and above any hardpan or compacted soil layers. Many of the small diameter roots are in the top 12 inches.


roots growing from above soil

Roots typically emerge from below ground but there are instances where prop roots originate from above the soil line.


tree growing in turf

We will take a journey under the ground to view tree roots in a variety of circumstances.


myth that roots grow mostly down in soil

Many advertisements still continue to perpetuate the myth that tree roots grow mostly down into the soil.


tree roots grow close to soil surface

Research clearly shows that many tree roots grow very close to the soil surface.