Maple Tree Roots - Knowledgebase Question

Vilonis, AR
Avatar for pands6
Question by pands6
October 1, 1999
I recently planted a silver maple tree in my front lawn. A friend of mine said it would spread roots upward and I would have trees coming through the ground all over my lawn, also that it would grow into my water systems no matter how far away it has been planted. Please tell me if this is true as I do not wish to have these problems but I don't want to replace this tree if it's not necessary.

Answer from NGA
October 1, 1999
Silver maples do tend to be surface rooted or shallow rooted which in turn can make it difficult to grow lawn or other plants beneath them. The roots of most trees normally spread further than the branch spread reaches. They may also send roots out and disturb underground pipes and walks. The notorious "baby maple trees" tend to come from seedlings rather than the main tree's roots. These trees are often planted because they can provide much needed shade in a hurry, but they also have some liabilities. In my experience, though, any large tree can cause problems if it is poorly sited. You might wish to consult with your local County Extension for suggestions as to the best types of trees to plant in your local area for any given purpose.

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