Mimosa Question Root System

joefalco(z8 MB SC)July 29, 2005

I was wondering if Mimosa Trees have a root system that can damage foundations.

The reason I ask is I had a mimosa tree volounteer very close to my house. The spot it is growing is a patch of dirt between my concrete driveway and the house.

I think the tree could look really cool here drooping over the driveway, but if it could damage the house or the driveway I want to dig it up now before it gets too big.



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dottie_in_charlotte(z7-8 NC)

I've been cutting down a mimosa that sprouted up along a sidewalk..for about 7 years. Chopped it down to the ground each year & it comes right back but with long branches that get in the way.
Even if it doesn't have damaging roots, it has persistent roots.
I wouldn't let it grow along a foundation.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2005 at 7:03PM
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jeffahayes(8a Upstate SC)

Kill it now before it divides and multiplies!

In addition to tearing up your driveway and foundation, it's about the weediest tree around and at or near the top of most lists of invasive, non-native trees to be eradicated.

I think they're pretty, too -- or I DID until I saw how they sprout up EVERYWHERE and found out all the problems they cause in the environment, not just my own yard. I let a "volunteer" grow up outside my fence over my pond area and now I have to cut that down, even though it looks good there, because I KNOW what it will lead to and I have to "practice what I preach," so to speak.

Responsible Gardening :)

    Bookmark   July 29, 2005 at 11:35PM
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dottie_in_charlotte(z7-8 NC)

Jeff, besides the chain saw, you better bring along napalm and a thermo-nucular (giggle) device to get those roots out or they will come back to haunt you.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2005 at 12:09AM
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jeffahayes(8a Upstate SC)

Nope, Dottie, Cut it within a few inches of the ground, immediately drill as big of a hole, width-wise, in the top of the cut trunk and about a quarter inch deep, and immediately pour the strongest concentrate of glyphosate you have available into that... TRUST ME... it WON'T come back from that!

The "standard" advice is just to paint the cut trunk with the undiluted glyphosate concentrate, but I find most of those freshly cut trunks tend to "bleed" a bit and anything you put on them runs off fairly easily, so I use a Forstner bit (although a regular drill bit will do, if you don't have Forstner bits) to dig a shallow "well" in that trunk to hold a bit of the glyphosate (Roundup is the main namebrand).

For those of you who garden "organically," GOOD LUCK with permanent elimination of most any aggressive tree or shrub. I've had hollies, oaks, redbuds and a variety of other things come back from fairly VICIOUS cuttings without using this method -- hollies even when the roots were ground by a "professional" to a depth of two feet.

I'm SURE there are "organic" ways to do it. I just don't know what they are.

Merry Mimosa Massacreing! :)

    Bookmark   July 30, 2005 at 12:24AM
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joefalco(z8 MB SC)

Ok I've heard enough, I'm pulling that bad boy up ASAP.

As for hollies, YES I also have one that is cut to the ground and it stil comes back every year.

As far as orgamic removal I heard of this method which is elaborate.

Take a Steel Drum cut out of bottom and top to make a "burn barrel) Place the barrel over the offending stump fill with wood and have a long fire. It will burn the stump out of the ground including deep roots.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2005 at 10:38AM
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joefalco(z8 MB SC)


The Mimosa was pulled up and is now composting!!!!

Die Evil TREE DIE!

    Bookmark   July 30, 2005 at 5:09PM
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dottie_in_charlotte(z7-8 NC)

Joe, nowadays, most of us can get into trouble by open burning. At least you don't have to resort to that and the problem is solved.

Still, you can find mimosa starts at lots of roadside 'garden centers' or at plant swaps. That way you can have it where you want it.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2005 at 5:43PM
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gurley157fs(zone 7/8sc)

Joe, I believe this plant is listed on the South Carolina state-listed noxious weeds website. I know it is on my noxious weeds list - I pull up the little ones almost daily and the nearest tree that I am aware of is almost half a mile away.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2005 at 9:12PM
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the reason the mimosa is so difficult to erradicate is that the root is a "tap root", meaning that it is as long as the main trunk is tall. So, it's no wonder they are hard to kill. I still think they are pretty and it just isn't summer if I don't see a mimosa blooming.

    Bookmark   September 9, 2006 at 1:13AM
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We had been cutting down a Mimosa on one side of our house and finally my DH dug it up! It of course came back. Well, last year he had to dig up along that side of the house for a different reason and it had a root the size of my wrist the length of the house and a baby one is coming up now at the other end of the house. That's 45 ft along the foundation of the house!

Thanks, Jeff, for the tip about Massacreing Mimosas. I will try it on the little one if the Round-Up didn't kill it...and I suspect it did not.

Do you know I saw a post and someone said the Mimosa was a plant everyone MUST have it their yard?

    Bookmark   September 12, 2006 at 12:31PM
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Tammy Kennedy

our backyard was full of them when we moved in 15 yrs ago. i recall being mad that when they surveyed they whacked some. it was't long befor we whacked more. but they came back every yr for many yrs until i finally started dipping my pruners in the roundup before i cut. 1 or 2 rounds of that finally took care of the resprouting. the trunks & roots rot relatively fast for wood once they're dead. we still have one huge tree we can't bear to cut, but do mow the seedlings. any strays in an area that doesn't get mowed get pulled after a good rain or roundup pruned. they are very pretty but oh so invasive. good luck!

i get mad every time i see someone selling them. how irresponsible. the only place they are acceptable to me is somewhere you can really keep a tight reign on seedlings. i do have to admit the purple leaved one the arboretum had for a while was drop dead gorgeous. they got rid of it, but i don't know why. tam

    Bookmark   September 12, 2006 at 10:58PM
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