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Author Topic: Fig Root Damage to property  (Read 1412 times)

Triloba Tracker

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Fig Root Damage to property
« on: March 10, 2016, 06:31:50 PM »
I feel like I've read several places that figs have aggressive roots that can damage house foundations, plumbing, pavement, etc.

Is that right?

I'm considering planting a fig (a dwarf variety) in the ground near some asphalt and wondered if over time it might buckle the pavement with root growth.

fyliu

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Re: Fig Root Damage to property
« Reply #1 on: March 11, 2016, 12:01:38 AM »
I'm interested in the responses to this question.

Personally, I wouldn't worry unless your tree suddenly grows really fast and strong like it tapped into a leaky swerage pipe.

vlan1

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Re: Fig Root Damage to property
« Reply #2 on: March 11, 2016, 05:00:21 PM »
You could always get a roll of bamboo barrier and dig the hole a big oversized  to allow room to grow and just wrap the hole 2-3 for thickness so the roots are encouraged to grow down and not out.

fyliu

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Re: Fig Root Damage to property
« Reply #3 on: March 11, 2016, 09:20:31 PM »
So... fig roots WILL NATUALLY DAMAGE PIPES?

Or only under certain conditions, like the pipe was already leaky? I know plumbers tend to be quick to blame it on the first thing they can use.

shaneatwell

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Re: Fig Root Damage to property
« Reply #4 on: March 11, 2016, 09:28:52 PM »
I had 3 ficus benjamina here when I moved in. One I had to remove to keep it from further destroying the deck and pool. Second had already lifted front sidewalk, which had to be repaired. Third was just merging with a fence and invading the deck drainage pipes. I did plant one new fig, but along the back wall which I don't really care about and the ficus couldn't touch though it tried. And I planted a mulberry, but smack in the middle of my front yard with the most space of any tree I have. Beware the roots of the fig family.
Shane

fyliu

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Re: Fig Root Damage to property
« Reply #5 on: March 11, 2016, 09:39:28 PM »
How large were the ficus trees? I'm wondering if the roots are the same mass as the top or if the roots are much more than you can see above the soil.

I have fig plants in the front yard a few feet away from a cinder block wall. They don't seem to grow much because there's a 60 year old chinese elm shading them from the top and robbing nutrients from the bottom.

shaneatwell

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Re: Fig Root Damage to property
« Reply #6 on: March 11, 2016, 09:52:17 PM »
Biggest was ~35' and definitely had roots spread way beyond its crown. One 10 incher for example that want just under the surface straight to the neighbors overwatered back yard. The other two both had roots beyond their crowns, but not as impressively so.
Shane

fyliu

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Re: Fig Root Damage to property
« Reply #7 on: March 11, 2016, 10:40:48 PM »
I have yet to find out if my figs will do some damage. They're going to form a 4-5ft hedge. I like my figs pruned to a size where I can keep the squirrels out with bird netting. Same with guavas.

 

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