The Q&A Archives: paradise trees

Question: I have two pardise trees in my yard. One is rather large, while the other is smaller, maybe a off shoot of the big one.
My problem is how do I get or stop the runners from sprouting?They are coming up under my deck, all over my yard, every where.
I have been cutting them down even with the ground, and was planing on digging up the yard to plant grass and flower bed. But I need these gone first. Help.

Answer: Given your growing region, I'm not sure about the identity of your tree. Paradise Tree (Simarouba glauca) is found in coastal areas throughout South Florida, the Keys, the Caribbean and Tropical America. If you're growing this tree in Colorado, I'm impressed! In any event, many trees have reputations for growing surface roots and from sending suckers up from those roots. It doesn't really matter what tree you're growing, the problem is the same. Sadly, there's not much you can do about the problem, other than removing the offending roots. This can be problematic for your trees, though, depending upon where the rest of the roots are and whether removing some of the roots will still provide enough of a root system to maintain your tree's health. An arborist can inspect your tree, locate the roots and make a recommendation onsite. In the meantime, continue to cut the suckers off at groundlevel and go ahead with your plans to dig up the yard to plant grass and make flower beds. As you're digging you may be able to isolate the offending roots and sever them from the tree. Again, you don't want to remove all the roots, but most of those close to the surface can probably be shortened.

Best wishes with your project!

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