Driveways and tree roots – Help Needed!

concrete driveways and tree roots
Concrete Driveways and Tree Roots

Driveways and tree roots do not go together. If left uncontrolled they may lift driveway surfaces.

The only type of driveway surface strong enough to offer resistance for longer is concrete.

Take a look at the photo below.

It’s interesting for a number of reasons.

  • The beauty of the roots and their persistence in reaching further down into the earth
  • The type of hardcore used – evidence that this was an installation completed many years ago
  • The resilience of the concrete. You’ll note from the finished surface that it has not lifted….a sign of a strong mix!

So, from the list you’re probably most interested in the resilience of the concrete – but you can admire the beautiful roots, too!

driveways and tree roots
Driveways and tree roots

Concrete is a mixture of cement, water, aggregate and sand. The strength of concrete is usually measured in pounds per square inch (PSI) and ratios of each ingredient can be adjusted, which impact strength.

Put simply, if you increase the cement and aggregate and decrease the sand you’ll get a stronger mix!

But…that’s not the whole story with this particular driveway. You’ll also notice the thickness of the concrete. This is over 10 inches (260 mm) in places.

Providing double strength.

Driveways and tree roots – before a driveway installation

If you are having a new driveway installation that is not concrete it is wise to cut back tree roots that join the area that is to be paved. If the diameter of the roots is more than 25 mm you should consult with a arboriculturist (find one at the tree expert finder)- as the tree’s health and stability may be affected.

Any roots with a diameter of less than 25 mm are fine to cut back. All that you need is a hand saw or secateurs.

Driveways and tree roots – maintenance

Once a driveway is installation is complete keep an eye on tree growth- especially if a tree is quite close to your driveway.

Regular pruning is the easiest way of ensuring a tree does not take over!

Any questions? Let us know. We’re always here to help.

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