We typically get asked about a tree too close to a house. The consensus is that it makes cracks in the foundation and that the tree’s roots will penetrate the concrete, expanding and causing it to crack. Frankly, this would be of concern to any Rochester homeowner. But, is this the truth?
The answer: no and here’s why.
It’s imperative to know that tree roots are always looking for moisture in the soil. They will thrive towards moisture but completely stop growing if the soil is dry. The soil right next to a foundation is typically very dry, even drier if there is a roof overhead since no rain can get to it. Not to mention, a foundation produces heat, even in summer, drying out the nearby soil.
The result is that, when a tree begins to grow near a foundation, whether it sprouted there or was planted, the bulk of its roots will germinate away from the foundation, toward the nearby moist soil. Roots have no attraction for concrete which is alkaline and dry. Therefore, roots don’t enter the cracks in a foundation. They don’t create any as well.
Other Tree Effects
Under natural circumstances, a tree situated near home doesn’t hurt the foundation. However, there are other things to consider when a tree is growing near a residence.
The tree’s branches can rub against the roof or wall, particularly on a day in which there are strong winds. This isn’t good for your home or your tree. You should prune or remove the limbs that are causing a problem and detracting from the tree’s healthy appearance.
A tree developing next to the foundation can exceed the height of the home, and its branches will probably spread over the roof. This by itself isn’t dangerous. It will keep the house cool in the summertime. Moreover, a shaded roof lasts longer than one always open to the sun.
However, needles, leaves, and little branches from an overhanging tree tend to fall on the roof and can clog the gutters. It’s smart to clean your gutters in late fall, regardless if you have an overhanging tree or not. A Rochester tree service company can perform the work for you since gutter cleaning can be a hazardous task.
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