How Far Should Your Trees Be From The Side Of Your House?
Date January 15, 2021
Trees are the centerpieces of our landscape, and we often design our yards and gardens around them. If you’re planning to make a statement with your yard by planting a tree sometime this year, there are a few things you should keep in mind. Depending on the tree’s size, you can’t grow it just anywhere, or else your new statement piece could become a safety hazard. The main concern is keeping trees away from your house, but there are other things you need to look out for as well. Below are our recommendations for how far your trees should be from the side of your house.
Why is this important?
You might have heard that you need to plant your tree away from your house because the tree’s roots might break the foundation and grow into the cracks. Don’t worry; it’s not that dramatic. Tree roots usually tend to grow away from foundations because they need moisture, and the area next to a foundation is often too dry for their liking. However, there are a few other reasons why you need to consider the location of your tree before you plant it:
- First, the roots can soak up all the moisture, causing the soil to become too dry during a drought. Foundations also need moisture, so a lack of water can weaken the building’s foundation and cause serious harm.
- Second, branches that are close enough to rub against the house’s walls or roof can cause damage. Also, branches that extend over the roof will drop leaves, dead branches, and other litter that will obstruct your gutters.
- Third, if your tree is too close to a structure, it might not grow correctly. Trees need to be able to grow straight and symmetrical with evenly spread branches. If they’re not able to, it will negatively impact the integrity of the tree.
What’s the correct distance?
We tend to pay attention to the part of the tree that’s above ground, which is an important factor when choosing a location for your tree, but it’s essential to think carefully about what’s taking place underground as well. The spread of a tree’s roots will generally grow beyond the diameter of the tree’s crown. So when determining how far away to plant your tree from your house, keep the roots in mind. How far away is far enough? We’re happy you asked! Here’s a quick guide:
- If your tree is supposed to reach a maximum height of 25 feet at maturity, plant it 10 feet away from any buildings.
- If you expect your tree to be 25-50 feet at maturity, plant it 15-20 feet away from any buildings.
- If your tree is supposed to grow to more than 50 feet tall at maturity, plant it at least 30-50 feet away from any buildings.
What if it’s too late?
If you already have a tree growing closer to your house than recommended, there’s probably no need to panic. Some trees have been growing next to homes for years and, as long as you don’t mind how the tree looks, you might not need to remove it if it isn’t harming your foundation. However, trees’ primary function is to add beauty to our yards, and sometimes a lopsided tree doesn’t fit the aesthetic. You might need to remove a tree that’s closer than five feet away from your house. If you’re concerned about the placement of a tree in your yard, you should contact an expert tree service to assess the tree and help you determine the best tree care methods or if removal is necessary.
Other things to look out for when planting
There are several other things you should consider when deciding where to plant your tree. Before you start digging, you’ll need to locate where your utility lines are. The city delivers these services to homes through overhead or underground lines. Your electricity and phone lines could be either above ground or below ground. Your water, sewer, and gas lines are located underground, so find those before you begin digging a hole for your new tree.
By paying close attention to this easily overlooked issue, you can save yourself from a headache down the road. Trees that grow into overhanging wires can cause service interruptions when the tree’s branches hit the wires. There’s also the possibility of injury or death to animals or even children who climb the trees and come into contact with cables. You should also ensure that your tree isn’t close enough to the street or alley to block visibility for passing cars, especially near corners or intersections. Check to make sure your tree doesn’t obstruct any street signs.
We can help
If you have any questions or concerns about where to plant your new tree or if an existing tree is causing issues, TreeNewal is here to help. We’re a Tree Service LLC with three ISA Certified Arborists and a team of highly qualified tree care experts. We offer professional tree care in North Texas, and we are incredibly knowledgeable in tree planting and installation.
Our certified tree experts can help with every step of the process, from selecting the right tree to soil enhancement and conditioning to choosing the ideal spot. When selecting a certified arborist tree service, pick someone with knowledge and experience with correct spacing, hole depth, proper drainage, exposing root flare, and pruning the roots of a new tree. Our team can help with all that and more. Give us a call today at tel:(817) 592-6846. Our team is happy to answer any questions you might have or send someone to your home or property to assess more serious concerns.
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