Can You Cover Tree Roots With Sod?

Can You Cover Tree Roots With Sod?

Can You Cover Tree Roots With Sod?

Tree roots can be an eyesore in your otherwise beautiful lawn, but is covering them with sod a viable solution? In this blog post, we'll explore the practicality and potential issues of laying sod over exposed tree roots. Whether you're looking for professional help with sod installation in Orlando, FL, or just want to enhance your landscaping knowledge, we've got you covered.



Exposed tree roots can be problematic for homeowners, posing tripping hazards and hindering the overall aesthetics of your lawn. One common question that arises is whether it's possible to cover these unsightly roots with sod. While it may seem like a straightforward solution, there are several factors to consider before proceeding.

In this post, we'll discuss the pros and cons of covering tree roots with sod, explore alternative solutions, and provide expert tips on sod installation in Orlando, FL. By the end, you'll have a comprehensive understanding of how to handle exposed tree roots and achieve a lush, beautiful lawn.

Why Are Tree Roots Exposed?

Before we dive into the specifics of covering tree roots with sod, it's essential to understand why tree roots become exposed in the first place. Several factors can contribute to this issue:

  • Erosion: Over time, natural erosion caused by wind and rain can wear away the soil, exposing the tree roots.
  • Shallow Root Systems: Some tree species naturally have shallow root systems that spread out near the surface of the soil.
  • Compacted Soil: In areas with heavy foot traffic or construction, soil compaction can push roots closer to the surface.
  • Improper Planting: Trees planted too close to the surface may develop exposed roots as they grow.

Understanding the cause of exposed roots can help you determine the best approach to address the problem.

Can You Cover Tree Roots With Sod?

The short answer is yes, you can cover tree roots with sod. However, it's not always the best solution, and there are several factors to consider:

Pros of Covering Tree Roots With Sod

  1. Improved Aesthetics: Covering tree roots with sod can create a smoother, more visually appealing lawn.
  2. Reduced Tripping Hazards: By covering exposed roots, you can minimize the risk of tripping and falling.
  3. Enhanced Lawn Health: Proper sod installation can improve the overall health and appearance of your lawn.

Cons of Covering Tree Roots With Sod

  1. Root Damage: Laying sod directly over tree roots can damage them, potentially harming the tree's health.
  2. Water Competition: Sod and tree roots will compete for water and nutrients, which can stress both the tree and the grass.
  3. Short-Term Solution: Covering roots with sod may provide a temporary fix, but the roots may eventually become exposed again due to ongoing erosion or tree growth.

Best Practices for Covering Tree Roots With Sod

If you decide to proceed with covering tree roots with sod, it's essential to follow best practices to minimize potential issues:

  1. Thin Layer of Soil: Apply a thin layer of soil over the exposed roots before laying the sod. This can provide some protection for the roots while promoting healthy sod growth.
  2. Adequate Watering: Ensure both the tree and the newly laid sod receive adequate water to reduce competition for resources.
  3. Regular Maintenance: Monitor the area regularly and provide necessary maintenance to prevent future root exposure.

Alternative Solutions to Covering Tree Roots

If covering tree roots with sod doesn't seem like the best option for your lawn, there are alternative solutions to consider:


Mulching around the base of the tree is an excellent way to cover exposed roots without harming the tree. Mulch provides several benefits:

  • Moisture Retention: Mulch helps retain soil moisture, which is beneficial for the tree's health.
  • Temperature Regulation: Mulch can regulate soil temperature, protecting roots from extreme heat or cold.
  • Weed Suppression: Mulch reduces weed growth, which can compete with the tree for nutrients and water.

Building a Raised Bed

Creating a raised bed around the tree can effectively cover exposed roots without damaging them. Use a combination of soil and mulch to build up the area around the tree, ensuring that the roots remain covered. Be mindful not to pile soil directly against the tree trunk, as this can lead to rot and other issues.

Ground Cover Plants

Planting ground cover plants around the tree can provide a natural and attractive way to conceal exposed roots. Choose shade-tolerant plants that won't compete aggressively with the tree for resources. Some suitable options include:

  • Hostas
  • Ferns
  • Vinca minor
  • Pachysandra

Creating a Landscape Feature

Turn the exposed roots into a focal point by incorporating them into a landscape feature. Use decorative stones, gravel, or wooden elements to create a visually appealing design that highlights the natural beauty of the tree roots.

Professional Help With Sod Installation in Orlando, FL

If you're considering sod installation or need assistance with your lawn, contact From The Ground Up Landscaping. Our team of experts specializes in sod installation in Orlando, FL, and can provide you with a free estimate.

We offer a variety of services to help you achieve a beautiful, healthy lawn, including:

  • Sod Installation: Professional sod installation tailored to your lawn's specific needs.
  • Tree and Shrub Care: Expert care for your trees and shrubs to ensure their health and longevity.
  • Lawn Maintenance: Regular lawn maintenance services to keep your yard looking its best year-round.


Covering tree roots with sod can be a viable solution, but it's essential to weigh the pros and cons and consider alternative options. Whether you choose to cover the roots with sod, mulch, or ground cover plants, proper care and maintenance are crucial to achieving a beautiful, healthy lawn.

If you need professional help with sod installation in Orlando, FL, contact From The Ground Up Landscaping today for free estimates. Our team of experts is here to help you create the perfect outdoor space for your home.

By following the guidelines and tips outlined in this blog post, you can make an informed decision about how to handle exposed tree roots in your lawn. Remember, the key to a thriving landscape is regular maintenance and seeking professional assistance when needed. Happy gardening!

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