I live in a Southern California Valley neighborhood. There is a flowering Magnolia tree and the roots of the tree had pushed up all the concrete driveway. So, I removed the concrete. There are thin scraggly roots on top of the dry dirt that stretch out almost 20 feet (to the house itself). I want to cut these roots back to about 10 feet from the base of the tree. Will that damage the tree? I will be laying some dirt/compost and gravel to replace the cement for the car to park on. I was told this would be better for the tree roots. Is that accurate?
Any cutting of the roots is bad. The roots are like the blood vessels in you're body. If you cut them, you should fertilize the tree for a couple years so it has time to maybe re grow new ones. Hire a professional arborest for this step. Also it would not hurt to have one come out and look at the situation, as pruning or other steps might be needed.
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