Top 5 Trees With The Most Invasive Root Systems

The roots of a tree in Stone Mountain often extend down much further and much wider than we would think. Root systems are usually as wide and as deep as the crown of the tree and often branch out much further than that. This can cause a number of problems including:

  • Lawnmower obstructions - As a homeowner, the last thing we want while mowing our grass is to run over anything that could potentially ruin or dull our blades. These invasive root systems will not only damage your lawnmower, in fact, the lawnmower will do more damage on the tree. Running over roots, bumping into trunks, etc. all greatly damage the health of your trees and can cause eventual decline or death.

  • Piping interference - When your trees roots are aggressive and water seeking, this can lead them to invade your water or piping lines underground causing leaks in your septic or water systems.

There are some species that are most likely to develop aggressive root systems including:

River birch- Starting off with the absolute worst first, River birch trees in Stone Mountain are the absolute most invasive roots because they are the most water seeking. If this beauty is deprived of any water, it will seep into your septic system in search of it. Aside from the root problem, this tree sure is beautiful but will constantly drop limbs and bark throughout the year. This is one messy son of a Birch!


Hybrid Poplar - Often used for engineered lumber products, energy and pulpwood, these massive species have a root system that will dive as far as 160-450 feet underground with little regard to anything nearby.

Silver Maple - The silver maple is a prized tree for its beautiful fall colors and unique leaves but be careful to leave these guys away from any other plants, trees, structures or lawns. They have extremely invasive root systems that are water and space hogs and are very fast growing.

Willows - Willow species are among our favorite type all around, aside from the dreaded root systems in Stone Mountain. This water loving species will seek out water as long and as far as necessary, damaging everything in its path!

American Elm - The most popular commercially planted tree in Stone Mountain is the American Elm. You’ll often find this species outside of restaurants and in business complexes. However, planting these trees too close to sidewalks can be detrimental to the pavement or other plants nearby. Their roots are extensive but also shallow, damaging pavement and sidewalks along the way.

A lot of the trees we have listed have a lot of benefits as well and it really comes down to the location of the planting not the species itself. Make sure to plant these in an area where it has plenty of space for growth and you shouldn’t have any problems! If you are looking for a certified Arborist in Stone Mountain Ga to do some tree planting for you, we can help! We have a staff filled with highly trained technicians ready to assist you with your next project! Call today!

(770) 554-9406

North American Tree Service