Just bought a new house, and after a great deal of searching I finally found one of the sprinkler valves (manual) to the sprinklers I keep seeing around the yard. When I opened it up, I saw a very generous root ball around the valve. The box appears dry, but when I pulled back the roots it was a bit moist underneath, so I do think there's an active leak.

I tried pulling the root ball off, but it's very thick. What's the best way to remove these roots without damaging the pipes or wires?

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  • Do you have a compost pile, or known someone who does? If so, dig the wettest stinkiest goop you can find from the bottom and slather the root ball with it to let nature do the work. Bath salts can work as well.
    – dandavis
    Jul 19, 2021 at 23:38

1 Answer 1


With difficulty and a lot of cutting. I have this problem in a few locations. Apparently a very small leak causes roots to grow vigorously around the valves.

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