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WestBentley 01-16-2007 09:30 AM

Trees against house?
My fiance and I are having a bit of a disagreement. Apparently whoever built this place didn't take into account the fact that trees grow and two huge pine trees are now snuggled right up to either end of our house. Aaron wants to just trim off the branches touching the house because the trees are sturdy and not in danger of toppling. I want to cut them both down because along with being a nuisance in need of frequent trimming, I've been told having them that close is bad for draining water away from the house and just a bad idea in general.

Does anyone have any definitive information or at least some ideas on which way to go with this particular problem?

CraigFL 01-16-2007 10:26 AM

Trees that have large surface root systems shouldn't be real close to the house foundation -- especially true if you have a basement. That said and since pine trees aren't in that category, I am a believer in keeping all the trees possible. When my wife and I built our house on a half acre lot with hundreds of trees(including probably fifty 100 foot high pines), we didn't cut down one of them but built in between them. Some would have cut all of them down but we didn't. Certainly, there is some extra work associated with that but it just depends what you want. In your case it will depend on what agreement you can come to with your future spouse.

glennjanie 01-16-2007 10:44 AM

Hello WestBentley:
Have you noticed how a tree holds the water off the ground for a while in a light rain? It may protect you for 15 minutes when the rain starts BUT it will drip for an hour or more after the rain stops. This dripping is detrimental to roofing materials and paint on the house. The damp, shady spot will also grow a lot of moss, on your roof, siding and the ground.
I like trees too but we must remember they are a renewable resource. I say take the 2 trees down and plant 5 or 10 more along the edge of the lot and in corners. Is that a reasonable compromise?

WestBentley 01-16-2007 10:54 AM

Well that's actually what I want to do is plant trees near our property line, but Aaron would prefer to keep the pines intact and add more. He definitely wants to keep them from dripping on the roof (and currently one partially blocks *his* side of the garage) but I think they will look ridiculous and also get very side-heavy if he chops off what is neccessary.

Craig - Do all "evergreens" fall into the category of not having large surface root systems? 'Cause to be honest, I call them pines, but they could be firs or what have you.

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