The Q&A Archives: Roots of Dwarf Korean Lilac (syringa meyeri palibin)

Question: am seeking assistance with obtaining an expert opinion on the Dwarf Korean Lilac (Syringa meyeri ?Palibin?). The concern is the shrubs were planted over fiber optic cables used for network connectivity.They were planted about 2 ? feet out from the cables and 3 feet down. concern is whether these types of shrubs pose a threat to the fiber optic cables possibly destroying and or damaging them as the root system of the shrubs grow. Would the plants roots reach the cables and if so approximately over what period time, i.e., two years, three years, four years, etc would this happen? If these types of shrubs have an extensive root system, they may be the wrong type being planted.

Answer: Most trees and shrubs have their roots concentrated in the top 18-24" of soil and they extend out to nearly twice the diameter of the canopy. A Dwarf Korean Lilac will reach a mature size of only 4-5' so the root system will not be extensive. I don't think these shrubs will pose a threat to correctly installed fiber optic cables.

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