Question about redwood tree growth

Discussion in 'Gymnosperms (incl. Conifers)' started by jonny5cal, Mar 3, 2006.

  1. jonny5cal

    jonny5cal Member

    Likes Received:
    CA, USA
    Hi all,

    We have a coastal redwood tree (sequoia sempervirens) that is approaching the house. As it stands, the roots that are above ground are about a foot or two from the foundation. I was wondering if there's any known way to slow or stop additional growth of the tree. The redwood itself is very beautiful and very healthy and I'd like to keep it that way. However, I would like it if it didn't grow into the house. I know this might be a long shot, but anyone know of any way?

  2. Michael F

    Michael F Paragon of Plants Forums Moderator 10 Years

    Likes Received:
    Britain zone 8/9
    Dig a trench just outside the foundations and put in a root barrier.

    There is no way of stopping the tree from growing without killing it.
  3. jimmyq

    jimmyq Well-Known Member 10 Years

    Likes Received:
    Metro Vancouver, BC, Canada.
    I agree with micheal F. but perhaps consider having the trench dug by an air powered tool such as air spade or air digger, then you can cleanly cut the offending roots and install the root barrier (Deeproot is a product I have used). then backfill the trench and you should be good to go.
  4. mr.shep

    mr.shep Well-Known Member 10 Years

    Likes Received:
    San Joaquin Valley, California
    Dig a trench just outside the foundations and put in a root

    This will not help for a Coastal Redwood until there is a
    change in the watering of this tree. These trees have to be
    deep watered or we will see lots of surface roots. Even
    when planted on a two foot thick layer of hardpan (claypan,
    not a man made or artificial layer whereby construction
    sand is poured over clay and then later becomes compacted)
    the roots will grow downward and then out rather than so
    much laterally on the surface if we deep water them. Out
    here, in the last fifteen years or so a rash of landscapers
    will plant these trees as close as five feet away from the
    home. The roots do not break up foundations as often as
    we might think but the roots will either grow under the
    foundations or the surface roots stop growing right at the
    concrete. With the latter is when we can have some trouble.
    The surface roots when they hit the foundation stop growing
    and the trees in some cases stop much to all of their root
    growth elsewhere if we continue on with sprinkler watering
    and/or drip irrigation and then after some deterioration of
    the old roots with little to no new root growth is when we
    can have some of these trees fall right through a home after
    a gale force wind. The leached calcium emanating from the
    dried cement (concrete) will be your barrier for the surface
    roots. The primary lateral roots will want to grow under the
    foundation. I am assuming you have either a concrete and/or
    a concrete block foundation.

  5. KylieJ

    KylieJ New Member

    Likes Received:
    Cupertino, CA
    Hi mr.shep....

    I found your post about redwoods and concrete, and am wondering if you may be able to provide an opinion on my situation.

    I purchased a home a few years back, which has a guest house that was built about 10 years ago by the previous owner, but without permit nor general contractor. It is a concrete foundation with crawl space, and was built about 5 feet away from a very large redwood (150+ feet, and about 4' diameter).
    There is uplifting of the concrete between the tree and the house, of course, and I am planning on taking it out.
    Would you recommend
    1) putting in basic stepping stones so that the water can reach the roots (benefit is natural water, no concrete/calcium barrier on the top (but the house foundation is still there), or
    2) putting some type of concrete back in the case that the roots may have started trying to go deeper to find water after 10 years

    I'm leaning towards #1, but figured I'd ask around. If this big boy uprooted and fell, it would completely go through and demolish our main house. Note, I have had it thoroughly trimmed by an arborist (more than half the limbs taken off, and those remaining trimmed shorter and thinned for side branches), and it is also still in very good health.

    Any inputs would be appreciated!
    thanks, Kylie
  6. norain

    norain Member

    Likes Received:
    salmo bc canada
    I know this works on some roots , but don't know if this will help you . Dig down along your foundation a few inches and put a galvanized plate or rolled zink ribbon found at hard ware store the zink will seep down and roots don't like to pass the chemical barrier . As it seeps into the soil .Worth a try , works for weeping willows to keep them from going to sewer pipes.

Share This Page