Causing thousands of blockages every year in Queensland and causing expensive bills for residents, invasive tree roots are the worst offender for blocking sewers! Queensland Urban Utilities revealed they clear over 3,500 blockages in sewer pipes every year and the cause is tree roots. That number doesn’t include any of the plumbing and drainage companies who also clear blockages caused by tree roots!

Tree roots are of course always on the hunt for water and nutrients, so sewers are the ideal target.
Particularly after a very long dry spell then sudden rain, RTL Trades have seen a huge number of cracked
and broken pipes with many body corporates, real estates, and residential customers calling for
During the traditional drought periods over winter, the tree roots would be targeting the pipes more
than usual in order to get their nutrients. With some tree roots being as thin as a strand of hair, they can
creep through the smallest of joints between pipes, and within a matter of weeks, a mass of roots form
in the pipe, causing a serious blockage that is difficult to remove.
If left unattended, the roots can crack pipes and grow to be many meters long, causing thousands of
dollars’ worth of damage for homeowners.

What are the offending trees for blocking drains and sewers?
Queensland Urban Utilities spokeswoman Michelle Cull said “any tree can cause issues but some species
are more problematic than others. The worst offenders are those who love to seek out water, such as
figs, bottlebrushes, and paperbarks”

What trees have less invasive root systems?
Tulipwood, native gardenia, and lemon myrtle.

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