Tree Root Girdling Treatment: What You Need to Know

Do you notice tree root girdling on your favorite specimen? It’s not just an aesthetic quirk but a slow and stealthy killer that silently strangles a plant from beneath the soil. 

As one of Jupiter’s tree removal services, our crew at ECO Tree Experts knows the ins and outs of this insidious condition. Keep reading as we break down the nitty-gritty of root girdling, its impact, and how to nip it in the bud before it goes haywire.

Detecting the Problem

Imagine a python coiled around its prey — that’s girdling in a nutshell. This condition manifests as roots that encircle the trunk, creating a chokehold that hinders nutrient transport. 

Unfortunately, it doesn’t always manifest above ground. It pays to keep an eye out for these symptoms so you’re not blindsided by an unexpected death:

  • Thinning canopy
  • Leaves changing color or dropping out of season
  • Leafless or desiccated branches
  • Unseasonable flowering or fruiting
  • One side of the trunk goes straight to the ground with no natural flare

Prevention Is Always Better

Poor planting practices remain a leading cause of tree root girdling. Incorporate these strategies to stop this tree killer before it starts.

Dig Deep

Dig a planting hole two to three times wider than the root ball but no deeper. It’s the proper depth that gives roots the space they need to breathe, reducing the odds of them turning into a boa constrictor.

Inspect Your Saplings

Nursery roots have a propensity to coil in their pots, and if not corrected, they’ll continue their merry dance around your tree. Before planting, give the root system a good shake. A little roughhousing can help break their cycle and promote outward growth.

Plant in Quality Soil

Last but not least, assess the ground you want to plant in. When you dig into it, do you have to muscle your way through because it feels as hard as a brick? 

Severe compaction will force roots to take the path of least resistance, which can mean circling around instead of growing outward. Aerated soil, rich in organic matter, gives roots the best chance to grow in a healthy, radiating pattern.

Addressing Existing Girdling Issues

When girdling has already taken hold, trimming the offending root is typically the only solution. It’s a bold, necessary step to restore the natural nutrient flow and give it a fighting chance at survival.

Performing it incorrectly, however, can spell disaster. From causing undue stress to an already struggling tree to inviting disease and pest invasion, a botched job can ring the death knell for your beloved tree. 

Consult a Certified Arborist

Don’t take the risk of damaging your cherished tree further! Cutting the wrong roots may also impact its structural integrity, potentially turning it into a safety hazard. 

Let our specialists at ECO Tree Experts address your tree root girdling woes instead. Dial 833-321-TREE today for your peace of mind!

Also, visit our blog and learn everything about painting tree stump bark.