Resistance of simple plant root systems to uplift loads

S. B. Mickovski, M. F. Bransby, A. G. Bengough, M. C. R. Davies, P. D. Hallett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Citations (Scopus)


Plant root systems frequently permeate both natural and engineered soil slopes, influencing slope stability via mechanical reinforcement and soil drying. These root systems are often loaded by external forces during slope movements and when plant stems are subject to animal foraging or wind gusts. A series of physical model tests were conducted to examine how root geometries, root properties, and soil effective stress states affect the pullout capacity of simple unbranched model roots. Lengths of wood, rubber, and real roots were pulled from dry and partially saturated sand.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)78-95
Number of pages18
JournalCanadian Geotechnical Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2010


  • plant root systems
  • soil slopes
  • vegetation
  • geotechnology


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