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What can I do about exposed tree roots in my yard?

I have tree roots growing across my front yard (about 40" long) . Can I put topsoil down but not cover the roots? There is at least 2" high roots exposed. Would the trees die if I just put topsoil around the roots but keep the roots exposed? I live in Northern VA

Submitted by lbjhoo

It's always  a little risky to put soil over tree roots, but a thin layer probably won't hurt. You could also cover the area with mulch, although that means you couldn't plant with grass.  

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