How to remove lilac bush roots

Written by april dowling | 13/05/2017
How to remove lilac bush roots
Carefully remove lilac bush roots to prevent damaging them. (Flowering lilac in the city park. Novosibirsk, may 2007 image by Igor Zhorov from

Lilac bushes are known for their colourful flower clusters and fresh fragrances. The purple, white and pink blooms are commonly seen growing in landscapes and country fields. Lilac bushes may require removal when they experience inadequate growing conditions or take up too much yard space. Those with allergic reactions to lilacs bushes often eradicate them for health purposes. Removing lilac bush roots is necessary for transplanting or preventing future growth. Fortunately, basic gardening tools can effectively remove lilac bush roots.

Water the lilac roots with a garden hose three days prior to digging.

Put on work gloves to protect your hands. Begin digging a circular trench around the bush stump, using a sharp spade. Dig the trench at least 3 feet from the bush stump.

Continue digging into the dirt until you can access the root system. Carefully wedge the spade underneath the roots. Pry up the roots with the spade while you walk around them in a circular motion.

Wedge the spade underneath the root ball. Walk around the root ball in a circular motion as you pry it up with the spade.

Pull the stump, intact roots and root ball from the ground carefully so not to tear the roots.

Place the roots and root ball on a burlap tarp. Transplant or dispose of the roots as you wish.


Contact your local city authorities for digging laws to prevent damaging an underground pipe.

Tips and warnings

  • Contact your local city authorities for digging laws to prevent damaging an underground pipe.

Things you need

  • Garden hose
  • Work gloves
  • Sharp spade
  • Burlap tarp

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