The common fig (Ficus carica) has a shallow root system minus a taproot, spreading up to three times as large as the tree's canopy. The roots will not damage structures or steel piping, but can invade and damage clay sewer pipes, according to the Alabama Cooperative Extension System. Do not plant them over drain fields or closer than 25 feet from clay piping.
About this Author
Joyce Starr is a freelance writer from Florida and owns a landscaping company and garden center. She has published articles about camping in Florida, lawncare, gardening and writes for a local gardening newsletter. She shares her love and knowledge of the outdoors and nature through her writing.