Eliminating suckers at the base of redwood trees

We have a few redwood trees on our property; at the base of many, and along the roots of a few, there are many suckers which develop all the time. They look like thin asparagus shoots. One tree has a rather large accumulation along one root that is about 2 feet in diameter.
What can I do to eliminate or discourage these suckers from growing without endangering the trees?
Thanks Ken K
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For Redwood trees this is normal and healthy, they could be called "suckers" but actually add energy to the root of the tree and are the back up sprouts if anything goes wrong with the main tree. They can even develop into large trees of their own. If it important to remove them for ascetic reasons then just prune them back to the trunk and rub out sprouts as they appear, otherwise just let them grow.
Richard Reames http://www.arborsmith.com
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Arborsmith wrote:

Thanks, Richard. The sprouts are rather numerous and thick on a few trees. Is there anything that can be applied to discourage them from growing and that will not harm the tree? the trees are about 40-50 feet tall and I don't want to see one of them die and pierce our roof.....!
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