Caribbean Mahogany

FloridianoApril 10, 2014

There is a tree which my HOA defines as Caribbean Mahogany, very typical of south FL. If you search "Caribbean Mahogany Fruit" you will find it. The trunk is about 6-8 inches in diameter. The issue is this tree has a thick root going under the foundation of my property. From this root smaller roots are formed which also seem to go under the ground below my property. I don't want to remove the tree. Is it safe to just cut the root? Will that make the tree die?

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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

no one can really say.. if cutting one root will kill a tree ...

i doubt it highly ... unless it is a major root ... or such causes it to fall over in a wind storm ...

but if you cut a root.. it will make the tree more aggressive in growing other new roots.. so in the end.. over time.. you really do not accomplish anything ...

i doubt many of us are 'hands on' familiar with this tropical tree ... perhaps if there is a FL forum.. you might find more peeps with direct experience ...


    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 9:21AM
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brandon7 TN_zone(7)

Caribbean Mahogany is most often used as a common name for Swietenia mahagoni, so I guess that is what you are working with.

For a good answer to your question, I think we need to know more precisely what your concern is. Are you worried about having surface roots in your yard, damage to a foundation, or what?

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 12:18PM
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I saw one in a parking lot in the Fla keys. Very beautiful bark.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2014 at 12:14AM
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If anyone is still interested in this topic, I have a potted Swietenia that lives on the deck in the summer and inside under grow lights during the winter.

My husband attended a seminar some years ago on specifying environmentally responsible and certified woods. Each attendee was given a Swietenia seedling (don't know the particular kind). The seedlings of all the people my husband went there with promptly died, but we were determined to keep ours alive. We've had him now for at least a dozen years after getting some suggestions on care from a botanist at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden.

I keep him trimmed so that it doesn't get taller than 6'. I water so that the soil doesn't feel either dry or particularly wet. In the summer, he gets what the sky gives it. The tree has compound leaves - about a 5-6" stem (light yellow-green) with 6-8 leaflets, no terminal leaflet. They are about 3/4" x 1-1/2", oval with sharply pointed ends, smooth, in an intense green color. They all drop in late winter/early spring with the new sprouts appearing within a few weeks. The trunk is a faintly reddish-grey color, currently 1-3/8" in diameter with buttressing. It has never bloomed.

It has gotten mild infestations of spider mites 2-3 times. Spraying it with Safer insecticide clears it right up.

It is certainly unique to have "Mo" living with us; our guests are always fascinated by him.

This post was edited by nameNOTunique on Thu, Jan 8, 15 at 16:50

    Bookmark   January 8, 2015 at 4:44PM
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