How To Get Rid Of Oak Tree Sprouts In Lawn

How To Get Rid Of Oak Tree Sprouts In Lawn
  • Author: Amanda Arnold
  • Posted On: November 9, 2021
  • Updated On: August 21, 2023

Over the course of its life, an oak tree will drop acorns. Foraging creatures may bury or transfer these acorns, which may sprout. While this is one method the species has managed to thrive over time, it may not be the best situation in your garden.

Oaktree seedlings can germinate in places you don’t want them, such as along the trunk of an existing tree or in your grass.

Oaktree sprouts from tree roots on a lawn or ornamental grass bed can detract from the aesthetic of a yard and obstruct yard maintenance duties like mowing.

When the sprouts are growing out of the roots of a desirable parent tree, mechanical removal is frequently the only choice. If the undesirable tree sprouts were grown from seed, you could go for different chemical techniques.

Why Do You Need To Remove The Sprouts?

It’s possible that some saplings are being removed for purely cosmetic reasons. Make sure to design gardens that are visually appealing and relaxing for all.

On the other hand, foraging animals aren’t known for sticking to gardening design ideas and may wind up planting an oak tree seedling amid a pathway or in an area where your other plants would be deprived of sunlight.

Sprouts can also harm the older oak tree and detract from its outstanding natural beauty. Keeping your oak tree and your landscape, in general, looking their best can be as simple as removing saplings. Depending on the size, position, and number of newborn oak tree saplings in your yard, there are numerous options for getting rid of them.

Knowing what you’re up against can help you choose the finest strategies for safe and successful removal. A day or two before treatment, water the area where the tree shoots are slowly and deeply. Plants are more responsive to herbicides if they are not under drought stress, and it is easier to take undesirable plants out of moistened soil.

Tiny tree seedlings should be pulled or dug up by hand, eliminating the root system as possible.

1) Remove The Sprouts Manually

You can typically hand remove oak saplings if you catch them when they’re incredibly young. If they’re tiny enough, you might be able just to grab them at the base and pull them up by the roots.

The most efficient way to get rid of saplings is to remove tiny sprouts before they take root, but it’s possible to miss this window and find that the sprouts have grown larger and taken more substantial ground.

If you can’t do that, chop the saplings as near to the ground as possible. Any deeper roots can be dug out after that. The only way to ensure the saplings are effectively removed is to damage or remove the roots.

You may need to return to the saplings regularly to remove any potential new sprouts and to guarantee that the saplings are entirely gone in the allotted time.

2) Don’t Plough The Sprouts

To begin, it’s crucial to know that you shouldn’t try to till up oak tree seedlings. The sprouts will most likely appear on or near the base of an oak tree. Consequently, attempting to till them up will very certainly harm your oak tree. Tilling up the shoots might harm your oak tree in the long run.

Your tree may be able to recover and survive if the harm is mild. It has the potential to harm your oak tree if it is severe.

By not tilling sprouts surrounding your oak tree, you’ll be erring on the side of caution. Chemical-based pesticides should also be avoided when seeking to control oak tree sprouts. While it will destroy tree seedlings, it will also kill your oak tree.

3) Use A Mild Chemical Herbicide

If your oak tree seedlings have become established or are proving difficult to remove, you may want to use a chemical herbicide. If this is the case, carefully read and observe all product label instructions, including safety precautions/gear and timing, mixing, application and reapplication, cleanup, and proper storage and disposal.

Cut the sapling back and use secateurs to make a few cuts in the trunk. When using secateurs, make sure you’re wearing cut-resistant gardening gloves. The sapling should start to die and turn brown. You may need to repeat the process if the first application fails. You can dig the sapling out once it’s dead to get rid of any last remnants.

4) Chop Off The Sprouts

Chopping off oak tree sprouts is the most effective way to control them. Cut the sprout as near to the tree as possible using a pair of clean gardening shears.

This will not prevent them from regrowing. When given enough time, oak tree sprouts, on the other hand, typically grow back. It will, however, get rid of them from your oak tree without causing any damage to it.

Marks can also be treated with a chemical herbicide if they are adamant about eradicating. However, because the parent tree can absorb the poison through its roots, it is more complex than treating seedlings. If you’re planning to remove the tree shortly, this is a viable alternative.

Remove any suckers sprouting from the stump once the tree has been chopped down, and use a tree stump herbicide to prevent new suckers from growing.


Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using herbicide. Herbicides that aren’t selective can harm or kill any plant they come into touch with. Herbicide treatment of a sprout developing from a tree’s root system can harm the tree.

On the other hand, some commercially available products may state that they can control suckering or that they are ideal for treating sprouts growing a certain distance away from the parent tree. However, it depends on you to either use the chemical herbicides or remove the sprouts manually.

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Author: Amanda Arnold

Amanda has been working with ConstructionHow since 2021. Her experience spans over 5 years in the creative niche such as home decor and trends, landscaping, renovations, and custom architectural values. As a home designer expert, she has a keen eye for the latest home improvement trends with accurate facts that readers find impossible to ignore. Being invested in home-building trends is how she has gained her lucrative expertise exploring more to bring a positive ambiance for all homeowners (and even tenants!). Currently, she lives in a beautiful beach home, a source of fascination for her.