Do Pine Trees Have a Taproot?

Written by karen carter
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Do Pine Trees Have a Taproot?
Pine trees rely on tap roots to anchor them into the soil. (Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Pine (Pinus sp.) is a conifer. Pine trees range in height from 4 to 100 feet. They serve as windbreaks, Christmas trees and sources of turpentine. Pine trees develop deep tap roots as the part above ground begins to grow.

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Types

Pine trees develop two different types of roots. Fine roots grow in the top 6 inches of soil and live for a year before being replaced by new roots. Coarse roots are deep roots, like tap roots and live as long as the pine tree.

Size

Small pine trees grow tap roots 4 to 15 feet deep. Large pine trees produce tap roots that reach 35 to 75 feet deep. Tap roots grow straight down searching for water.

Function

Tap roots provide the pine trees with stability as the above ground section becomes top heavy. These roots also store starch, a source of energy.

Warning

Pine tree roots cause damage to structures if they are planted in the wrong location. Tap roots can break into sewer lines, water pipes and building foundations.

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