The Q&A Archives: Root Systems on Jacaranda and Australian Tree Fern

Question: I would like to know just how extensive the root systems are for Jacaranda and Australian Tree Fern. Can you tell me how deep and wide the roots will spread?

Is there a way to prune the Jacaranda so that its height can be controlled?

Can I plant Alsophila in my yard that gets all day sun?

Answer: The ultimate size of a tree's root mass will depend upon growing conditions - soil type and watering practices - but in general terms, the Jacaranda will develop roots in the top 18-24 inches of soil and spread out nearly twice as far as the canopy is wide. The smaller you keep the canopy, the less distance the roots will travel. You can annually prune the Jacaranda to keep it small. The roots of a tree fern will grow deep (several feet, depending upon water availability) and extend out only 2-4 feet from the base of the plant.

Full sun is just fine for a tree fern.

Enjoy your landscape!

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