Strong Roots, Weak Foundations
Usually when thinking about planting a new tree, landscape aesthetics and shading plays a very big part in the decision-making process. However, proximity to your structure should be a consideration as well. While a tree may appear to be a reasonable distance away from you structure, tree roots can spread as far as five time the radius of the tree canopy and can grow underneath foundations and, in extreme cases, through cracks in your foundation walls. These roots can swell and contract during heavy rains and prolonged droughts, respectively, disrupting the soils below the foundation and leading to potential settlement of the foundation. Roots of trees too close to retaining walls can place intense pressure along the rear of these structures, causing bulges to form or even causing the wall to fail completely, as seen in the adjacent photograph. Foundation and retaining wall issues can be extremely costly to repair and greatly impact the lives of residents in your structure, as opposed to removing improperly placed landscaping before they cause structural issues. If you have any concerns regarding landscaping impacting your structure, ETC can help you examine your options before they become a problem!