4 Fallacies & Facts About Tree Roots
blogdetail.jpg 01 Apr

4 Fallacies & Facts About Tree Roots

The roots of a tree do more than just absorb water, minerals, and nutrients. In addition to absorbing the water and nutrients the tree needs to survive, tree roots store food and nutrients to help the tree survive during the colder and winter months. Tree roots also anchor the tree to the ground.

Since tree roots are buried underground and out of sight, most people rarely give much thought to the roots. In order to take the best care of your trees, it’s important to have the right information about tree roots.

In this article, we will walk you through some of the astounding facts about tree roots and the common fallacies about tree roots.

Here Are 4 Facts About Tree Roots That You Need to Know:

Anatomy of tree roots

Tree roots are composed of the inner layer which carries water and nutrients and an outer layer that protects the interior of the root.

  • The horizontal root spread for some trees can be up to 7 times the dripline distance of the tree.
  • Some tree roots can keep growing for up to seven years after a tree has been cut down, provided they continue receiving nutrients.
  • Tree root growth is affected by soil compaction, which is determined by moisture content, type of soil, soil temperature, and density.

Here Are 4 Fallacies About Tree Roots:

  • All trees have single tap roots

This is not true because most trees produce lateral and feeder roots that are concentrated in the upper few feet of soil. However, this depends on the type of soil where the tree is grown. Trees that are grown in deep and well-drained soil tend to develop deeper roots, while those grown in shallow soil will grow mostly in the upper few inches of soil.

  • Tree roots are woody and tough

Not all tree roots are woody and tough as some people tend to believe. Some tree roots, especially those that grow in the outer reaches of root zones are fleshy because they are responsible for gathering water and food needed for survival.

  • Deeper roots secure more water and nutrients

On the contrary, the roots that are concentrated in the top three inches of soil supply a tree with water and food while deeper roots provide stability.

  • Tree roots grow only to a tree’s dripline

This is a false belief because tree roots can extend beyond the driplines of their branches in search of water and nutrients.

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