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My White pine (about 100 ft tall with a diameter of 2 ft) has had root damage. 12' away from the base of the trunk a one foot deep trench on the west side was dug to bury an electrical line. The trench was then back filled. I have been reading a lot about this tree and I'm worried it will die. Can anybody help me with information about this situation?

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It will have no affect on the tree. I have many southern pines of the same size . I have cut many roots, I can hardly dig a hole to plant or for a sprinkler without cutting roots. I take cutters with the shovel anytime I need to dig a hole. I have cut 4 " diameter roots a few feet from pines and oaks, only problem is that it is work.

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I agree with blacksmith37 that the chance the tree will die is remote. You can help it by

  • Watering the tree with several inches of water once a week will help it regrow roots in that area. -Take a few pictures of the tree now and compare next year to see if there is any die back.
  • Note the direction of the prevailing winds and observe if there is anything that would be broken or injured if the tree fell over. There is a low probability that it could be pushed over with the right combination of prevailing winds and lack of mechanical support from the root that has been cut.
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