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Our neighbors have recently cut down a Globe Willow and A Lombardy Poplar. They did not remove the trunks and the roots are not popping up in our lawn. Is there anyway for us to stop this from happening? These people are not the fastest movers and I have a feeling that the trunks will never be fully removed. These roots have already started to push up our concrete and have left runners down our lawn.

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A

Since those trees are cut down, if you continue to cut down the root suckers by mowing them down in your lawn, pruning and cutting up the larger stems and they will eventually stop producing and the roots will die.  This may take longer than you would probably like.  If you want to use chemicals (only advisable when parent tree is removed, not a solution or recommendation for controlling root suckers on living trees still in landscape) realize that you need to read instructions and labels carefully, because improper and misuse of herbicide is a common problem, and you may kill other ornamental plants that you didn't want to.  You can use glyphosate (round-up and other commercial brands available - look for glyphosate as active ingredient) directly on the root suckers which means protecting the grass and surrounding ornamental plants.  This can be done by using a small foam paint brush and applying only to the root suckers.

Posted on 30 Jul 2008

Maggie Shao
Horticulture Agent, Salt Lake County

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