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  • FIRST POST
    • PhilE
    • By PhilE 16th May 18, 6:32 PM
    • 304Posts
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    PhilE
    How to prevent roots of tree damagng foundations.
    • #1
    • 16th May 18, 6:32 PM
    How to prevent roots of tree damagng foundations. 16th May 18 at 6:32 PM
    So I have a tree that's about 12-15 feet away from the back of the house.

    What would be the best way to prevent the roots from causing any damage? Is pruning enough? Digging a trench and installing some pvc liner between the roots and house?

    Cheers...
Page 1
    • PasturesNew
    • By PasturesNew 16th May 18, 6:36 PM
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    PasturesNew
    • #2
    • 16th May 18, 6:36 PM
    • #2
    • 16th May 18, 6:36 PM
    What sort of tree? How tall is it?

    A PVC liner wouldn't help ... if you were building a new house close to a big tree then the foundations requirement would be much deeper than usual and a big fat chunk of hard/concrete foundations to stop it pushing through.
    • kerri gt
    • By kerri gt 16th May 18, 6:46 PM
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    kerri gt
    • #3
    • 16th May 18, 6:46 PM
    • #3
    • 16th May 18, 6:46 PM
    Very much depends on the type of tree, some trees spread roots far, wide and vigorously, some don't have very deep or spreading roots at all. Another factor can also be how much water the tree takes from the ground - not just where it's actual roots are. Thirsty trees that take water from the ground can cause soil shrinkage and potentially subsidence / property movement, and once removed the converse happens as the ground 're inflates' like a sponge.
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    • sevenhills
    • By sevenhills 16th May 18, 7:03 PM
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    sevenhills
    • #4
    • 16th May 18, 7:03 PM
    • #4
    • 16th May 18, 7:03 PM
    So I have a tree that's about 12-15 feet away from the back of the house.

    Cheers...
    Originally posted by PhilE
    Keep the tree to less than 20 foot

    • PhilE
    • By PhilE 16th May 18, 7:17 PM
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    PhilE
    • #5
    • 16th May 18, 7:17 PM
    • #5
    • 16th May 18, 7:17 PM
    So does pruning a tree keep its roots smaller?
    • Furts
    • By Furts 16th May 18, 9:12 PM
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    Furts
    • #6
    • 16th May 18, 9:12 PM
    • #6
    • 16th May 18, 9:12 PM
    Depends what type of tree, what type of foundation and what type of ground. There is no simple answer.

    You ask about foundations but bear in mind the roots could be into drains, around water pipes, or electric cables, or gas pipes, or telecom or broadband ... all often get overlooked.

    The default setting is a tree close to a houses is bad news. Yours is very close to your house!
    • PhilE
    • By PhilE 17th May 18, 11:37 AM
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    PhilE
    • #7
    • 17th May 18, 11:37 AM
    • #7
    • 17th May 18, 11:37 AM
    Its actually just under 20ft away from the actual home, but 10 ft away from a patio, that garden is on a slope. Its also 10 ft away from a garage. The tree itself is about 25 feet, so I could get it pruned to 20ft.

    It was there when the house was bought, a really good privacy screen and looks lovely, but not the ideal place to plant a tree, whoever planted it wasn't thinking long term.
    • Davesnave
    • By Davesnave 17th May 18, 11:53 AM
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    Davesnave
    • #8
    • 17th May 18, 11:53 AM
    • #8
    • 17th May 18, 11:53 AM
    You're asking all these questions but you haven't identified the tree yet, or you'd have said what it is.

    Some trees will be undemanding and, all other things being equal, probably fine 20' from the house. Others, poplars for example, are not recommended even 100' away.

    That said, I've a poplar about 20' from my barn, but it's not mine, so I can't do anything about it. Life is too short to worry about every little thing that might go wrong.
    'It's a terrible thing to wait until you're ready…..Generally speaking, now is as good a time as any.' Hugh Lawrie.
    • Furts
    • By Furts 17th May 18, 1:02 PM
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    Furts
    • #9
    • 17th May 18, 1:02 PM
    • #9
    • 17th May 18, 1:02 PM
    You're asking all these questions but you haven't identified the tree yet, or you'd have said what it is.

    Some trees will be undemanding and, all other things being equal, probably fine 20' from the house. Others, poplars for example, are not recommended even 100' away.

    That said, I've a poplar about 20' from my barn, but it's not mine, so I can't do anything about it. Life is too short to worry about every little thing that might go wrong.
    Originally posted by Davesnave
    Not just the tree being demanding, because the same applies to the ground. If the ground is, say sand or gravel, then the roots are not much of an issue. All the concerns over cracking, heaving and swelling are usually where clay occurs. Down in your part of the world matters may be OK?
    • Davesnave
    • By Davesnave 17th May 18, 1:45 PM
    • 25,044 Posts
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    Davesnave
    Not just the tree being demanding, because the same applies to the ground. If the ground is, say sand or gravel, then the roots are not much of an issue. All the concerns over cracking, heaving and swelling are usually where clay occurs. Down in your part of the world matters may be OK?
    Originally posted by Furts
    Yes, we're rocky, sandy and drain fast here, but there are small pockets of clay. It's only a pole barn. Across the track there are other buildings much more vulnerable than our barn is; its walls were an afterthought!
    'It's a terrible thing to wait until you're ready…..Generally speaking, now is as good a time as any.' Hugh Lawrie.
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