Plan the perfect garden with our interactive tool →

How Destructive Are Common Fig Tree Roots?

...
Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images

Nothing about the common fig tree is small except its fruit. The tree grows to 50 feet in height, and tough, twisting branches extend even wider. Leaves are bigger than adult footprints and roots are extensive, though not aggressively destructive.

Function

...
fresh fig image by .shock from Fotolia.com

A fig tree's root system serves two purposes: to anchor the trunk to the ground and to bring it nutrients. Fig roots extend far beyond the tree canopy, but stay relatively close to the surface of the soil.

Considerations

Plant fig trees in a location with full sun, good drainage and sufficient water. Do not plant anything -- not even grass -- near a young fig, so that its roots have no competition for moisture. The less moisture, the farther the roots will extend in search of it.

  • Nothing about the common fig tree is small except its fruit.
  • Fig roots extend far beyond the tree canopy, but stay relatively close to the surface of the soil.

Potential Damage

A fig's roots are not aggressive enough to injure masonry, building foundations or pipes. The roots may damage sewer pipe, according to the Alabama Cooperative Extension, and should be kept away from sewers and septic systems.

Grow A Fig Tree

Everyone loves a sweet tasty fig, either in a Fig Newton or on a cracker with goat cheese. This unusual fruit is surprisingly easy to grow. First, you need to purchase a tree. Black Mission figs are one of the most popular varieties of fig trees. These are most often grown in California and have a dark skin, pinkish flesh and a rich flavor. A more cold-hardy fig is the Brown Turkey. The U.S. and Canada contain 11 planting zones based on climate. If you live north of zone seven, plant your fig tree in a container that you can bring indoors. Dig a cone-shaped hole deep enough to cover the root ball. Fill in the sides around the tree with soil and tamp it down on top, then water it thoroughly. Your fig tree will need about eight to 10 hours of sunshine a day, so make sure you find a good spot for it. Don't prune a tree when it's flowering or when there are figs growing on it. However, if your fig is in a container, add some fruit tree fertilizer to the soil a few times each year. Let the figs get ripe on the tree before you pick them. Some trees produce two crops a year, in the spring and the fall. Then, make a delicious fig feast and invite your friends over to share the harvest.

  • A fig's roots are not aggressive enough to injure masonry, building foundations or pipes.
  • Your fig tree will need about eight to 10 hours of sunshine a day, so make sure you find a good spot for it.

Related Articles

Interesting Facts About Fig Trees
Interesting Facts About Fig Trees
What Kind of Fertilizer for Fig Trees?
What Kind of Fertilizer for Fig Trees?
Ornamental Fig Trees
Ornamental Fig Trees
Fig Tree Leaf Identification
Fig Tree Leaf Identification
Growing Figs in Maryland
Growing Figs in Maryland
How to Grow Fig Trees in Louisiana
How to Grow Fig Trees in Louisiana
The Best Soil for Potted Figs
The Best Soil for Potted Figs
How to Grow Fig Trees in Virginia
How to Grow Fig Trees in Virginia
Why Are My Figs Falling Off Before They Are Ripe?
Why Are My Figs Falling Off Before They Are Ripe?
Are Fig Trees Deciduous?
Are Fig Trees Deciduous?
How to Take Care of a Fig Tree in Ontario
How to Take Care of a Fig Tree in Ontario
How to Grow Fig Trees in Georgia
How to Grow Fig Trees in Georgia
Fig Tree Varieties
Fig Tree Varieties
How to Prune a Mission Fig Tree
How to Prune a Mission Fig Tree
Garden Guides
×