Asked May 6, 2020, 10:54 PM EDT

I have a hard maple tree that is planted 15-20 feet from house. It has a root that is about 3" diameter that is near/on the surface that is growing toward the house and is about 3-4 ft away. What can I do to stop this root from reaching the house and hurt the foundation? Can I cut the root through and not hurt the tree. The tree is higher than my 2 story Victorian house and provides needed shade on east side of house. Thank you for your help.

Iowa County Iowa

1 Response

Tree roots typically do not damage the foundations of homes. Tree roots can damage sidewalks and driveways as they are able to grow underneath them. When tree roots come to a solid surface, such as a house foundation, the roots grow around the foundation.

Shallow roots that eventually pop above the soil surface are common on maples.

I would not cut the surface root.