Trees are an important part of the environment as well as a great addition to homes and gardens. They provide shelter and food for animals and bring out the best look for your yard. ’Tis the season to start looking for your own beautiful trees to plant and grow. Whether it’s your first home or you’re adding on to the yard you’ve been growing for years, trees are a source of pride and comfort.
Not all trees are perfect for a yard, however. Tree roots are sturdy, and some can cause problems in a yard by how they spread, invading the space of other trees, damaging pipes, or even putting your home’s foundation at risk. You can forego many of these issues by being cautious about the trees you plant. Read on to find out which trees with invasive roots to avoid planting.
1. Silver Maple Trees
Silver maples are tall, colorful trees that grow quickly to almost two stories tall. They are a reliable source of shade in the summer as well. Their sap is less sugary than other maple trees but just as delicious for maple lovers. Maple tree leaves are a great indicator that the seasons are changing with their array of colors.
Unfortunately, they have highly invasive roots, and their limbs are incredibly weak due to how fast they sprout. They can be prone to lose branches during heavy storms and snow. These limbs can cause damage to your house and other parts of your property.
2. Willow Trees
Willow trees are well known for indicating spring, and most are familiar with the iconic shape of the weeping willow, which gets its name from the way rain falls off the tree’s leaves, like it’s crying. Willows have wide, branching roots that stay close to the surface and keep the soil moistened. These same roots can also disrupt topsoil and cause damage to lawnmowers. Willow trees also attract pests such as gypsy moths and aphids.
3. Oak Trees
Shockingly, oak trees are part of the list of trees with invasive roots. Oak trees have a history of being useful for the quality of their wood and positive environmental impact on the creation of oxygen. Oak trees are also well-known in the folklore of various cultures.
However, as majestic as the oak tree is, the roots can cause damage to housing structures and even break through pavement with their incredible strength. Depending on the size of the tree, an oak’s roots can spread more than 20 feet out from the base of the trunk.
If you have a love of oak trees, you can talk to an arborist about picking a location around your home where you can keep its roots in check.
4. Ash Trees
Just as well-known as oaks, ash trees are also highly useful. Their quality wood has been used for thousands of years to make weapons as well as furniture. They grow to 40 and 60 feet on average, with some goliaths reaching up to 80 feet, depending on how well the tree is nurtured. That strong growth extends to their roots, however.
Ash tree roots spread up to 30 feet and can crack through the foundations of houses if left unchecked. In their quest to find water and moisture, these roots won’t be stopped when something is in their way.
5. Poplar Trees
Poplar trees are another favorite tree with invasive roots. They can prevent erosion as well as provide a haven for different birds and other animals for the nature observer. Medicine is even made with ingredients from their bark and leaves.
But, while poplar trees are impressive, their roots are as strong and invasive as the other trees mentioned here. Poplars grow to at least 50 feet tall, and with that height follows long, deep roots to sustain the tree. The bigger the tree, the bigger the problems can come from its roots.
Some Solutions to These Tree Dilemmas
While it isn’t recommended that you plant these trees in your yard, there are a few ways you can still add them to your home. Measure out how much room you have in your yard for adequate space. Plant any of these far away from your home and away from streets and sidewalks.
Keep your trees and the yard surrounding them well maintained. You may have to regularly inspect your tree and its roots to gauge if you need to trim it up. Older trees might begin to sag and have the potential to fall over in a severe storm.
One other tip would be to plant trees that don’t grow as tall as oak, ash, or poplar. Smaller trees need fewer nutrients, and their roots don’t need to expand as far or as deep as these other trees. Smaller trees won’t need as much maintenance and can provide less of a nuisance. They are also a great alternative for smaller homes and properties.
Call a Tree Service Professional
Tree service professionals can help with this problem as well. They can remove troublesome roots and trim up trees to prevent them from getting out of control. Did you buy a home and discover one of these trees with invasive roots on your property? They can remove them from your yard just as easily.
Tree service professionals can also make recommendations on how many trees you can safely take care of in your yard and garden and where it’s best to plant them. They’ll know which trees are the best for your climate and even provide tips on how to take even better care of your trees.
Mr. Tree has been in business for over 30 years in Portland. We meet all of OSHA’s guidelines to operate safely and effectively. Mr. Tree even has 24/7 emergency tree removal services for anyone that needs it.
Ready to upgrade your front yard? Visit our website to schedule a free consultation.
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