Root Mapping

Is the process of locating the root system of trees. The roots system of trees is vitally important for stability of a tree. Other functions of the roots system include water and nutrient uptake. Knowing where the roots are located is important when building close to trees to ensure there is no adverse damage to the roots that may impact the long term health of the tree.

Root Mapping may also be required to determine if the root system of a tree is sound where a tree may be displaying symptoms of stress or there is concern in relation to the integrity or stability of the root system. Exposing the roots allows for examination of the roots for signs of damage, decay or disease.

There two main methods of root mapping used. Scanning the ground using penetrating radar equipment to locate the roots. The other method is to carefully remove the soil to expose the roots system. This can be by hand excavation, air spade or hydrovac. Machine exaction has the potential to cause damage to the roots system is not preferred choice.

Root Mapping is quite often required where developments are proposed in close proximity to trees, to identify roots that will be impacted by new structures. Determining exactly where roots are can also be beneficial when damage to property and structures needs to be reported on. This type of reporting will typically also require an Engineers Report. Having both an Arborist Report and Engineers Report will be the only way Councils will consider tree work in this situation.

What is Root Mapping?

It is where we move from being theoretical to practical. Most calculations of roots are done via the Australian Standards with quite a bit of intricate mathematics. Root Investigations is opening the ground in many different ways and actually seeing what is there. This can sometimes confirm the theory or prove it quite wrong. With this information we can produce more accurate reports. Structural Integrity of trees can be determined via root collar / crown root investigations. This can be done via manual excavations or air spade. The arborist will be looking for any fungal or pathogen damage to roots and the tree collar to report back on.

Ground Penetrating Radar can also be beneficial to also determine where significant roots are in a development site. We offer detailed plan and on the ground marking of where roots are.

Do I need Root Mapping?

Root mapping  is typically required where development may be in close proximity to tree which are to be retained. This will help to determine how close to the tree development can come without detrimentally impacting the trees health. This is best done at the planning stage to ascertain that what is planned can be built without impacting on trees to be retained. It  may also be requirement as part of the DA.

Root investigation may also be required where it is suspected that tree roots may be causing damage to buildings or infrastructure. In these instances root investigation reports together with an engineers report may be required.

Possibly. If you or council are not happy with how close a newly planned structure may be to a tree then this process can give the accurate information required. For example, council suggests that the new house cannot go where you want it to due to the theory of the root system. You engage Urban Arbor and we can do root mapping to determine if those roots exist if it is possible.

Who can do root mapping?

If ground penetrating radar is required this is very specialised field and the correct interpretation of the information is key. Therefore it is important to work with a company that has the experience with this type of technology.

Exposing the root system is delicate operation to ensure the roots don’t get damaged in the process. We use various methods including air spade, hydrovac and hand excavation to expose roots. It is best done by someone with the experience to ensure you receive accurate information and guidance based on the findings.

If have a project that requires root investigation we have extensive experience in this field. We work with developers, engineers and home owners and can provide guidance where required