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Posted 09/30/2019 in Homeowners & Tree Owners

Treehouses - Are they good or bad for trees?

Treehouses - Are they good or bad for trees?

With so many homeowners considering building a treehouse, questions get asked, “Are tree houses good or bad for trees?”  Many people are curious as to if treehouses will be secure in trees, what type of tree is best for tree houses, will a treehouse hurt a tree, etc. To go over some of these considerations and questions we reflect on tree safety loads. While it’s true that a treehouse does purposely create strain is true, that doesn't suggest that it cannot be performed and done right in a safe way which is healthy to the tree. What we are hoping for is that if you are considering constructing a treehouse in your backyard, which is safe in design but also great in keeping the health of the tree. 

This is the truth. Trees are living organisms. They have a manner of protecting themselves and convalescing from damage. You should understand a tree’s anatomy before you build a treehouse in a tree so that you will realize what the tree will do and how it'll react to the treehouse. 

Bark is a protecting barrier.

You might not realize this, but the bark of a tree plays a very essential function in tree safety. Trees are very much alive, which means they're vulnerable to diseases caused by bacteria and viruses. Sometimes those threats pose a bigger problem to a tree than a human body can due to the fact a tree can survive the lack of a limb higher than it may a sickness that is destined to kill it.

We recognize that trees, not like humans, do not have an immune system. Their simplest actual defense in opposition to bacteria and viruses is the bark. Bark literally is the bodily barrier that stops bacteria from infiltrating a tree. Wherever your bark is damaged, the dwelling tissue is uncovered. This can create a wound that may come to be massive trouble for your tree and resulting in an unsafe treehouse.

You will want to preserve bark damage to a minimum when constructing your treehouse. You have to avoid slicing chunks or branches from the tree. This will maintain its wholesome stature and restricting harm to the bark gives the tree more strength. When bolting the treehouse to the tree, you'll also need to use a larger bolt so that it sticks, exposing the least amount of living tree tissue as possible.

You will also want to avoid using a rope. Ropes can promote damage to a massive surface area of bark while the tree grows. The steady friction of the rope rubbing against it creates strain and damage to the tree. If you ought to use a rope, make certain you could set aside a while at least 12 months, possibly throughout the winter months or early spring while the treehouse isn't always precisely inhabitable at this time take the ropes off this lets the tree get a few months of rest from the ropes. 

Trees compartmentalize, then die.

As you know, trees don’t have immune systems. They also don’t know a way to regenerate tissue, damaged or otherwise. What takes place when a tree has broken tissue is that the tree walls off the broken area and lets it die. This technique is called compartmentalization. The tree does no longer wastes nutrients in this broken region. It will keep growing someplace else, but it has already given up on the damaged part of itself. Pretty cool huh?

Therefore, it’s important to note that any damage to a tree is everlasting. A tree does not get over harm. As an excellent rule, you have to lessen the wide variety of punctures you put into the tree when building a treehouse. Yes, you need your treehouse to be comfy, however, you need the tree healthful too. Please don’t use nails and screws to attach materials to your tree trunk. It’s better to use a few large bolts to hold the treehouse in the correct spot. They will do less harm to your tree.

You can even space out the tree punctures. They should not be near together. Why? If there are too many punctures in a certain area of the tree, the tree itself may want to compartmentalize the whole region and you will lose more of the tree than is important, inflicting problems to your tree and later the treehouse. You ought to give about a foot of horizontal and vertical distance between every puncture into the tree.

Let’s talk anchoring 

Trees use their roots to take in nutrients from the soil, however additionally they anchor themselves to that soil. The roots of a big tree shape a very huge network under the soil. They move a long way underground sometimes 2 to 3 times the width of the tree to stabilize itself. Sometimes, trees don’t develop upright but to the side. As a result, the roots will grow in a certain manner to atone for this. Whichever way the tree is overbalanced, the roots will grow in the other direction to counteract that.

Of course, this process is pretty gradual. A treehouse, that gets built over numerous months, will upload weight to the tree, more and more weight gets added so when building its best to balance the weight evenly. The roots will take years to deal with this greater weight. As a result, your tree might be weaker in the short time period and much more likely to be broken in a storm or heavy winds. 

Trees are constantly developing.

When building anything in a tree, specifically a treehouse, you should understand that a tree is continuously growing. While it’s proper that once a tree reaches adulthood, it's going to develop less, it does not ever forestall growing. If you place supports on your treehouse, close to the tree, the tree will sooner or later develop around that help. This may not actually harmful to the tree, however, it can make the tree look disfigured. If you remove the treehouse, it will be apparent that something turned into there impeding the tree’s growth in that area. Therefore, you need to make the supports of your treehouse as unrestrictive as possible to preserve the health of the tree. 

So, we’ve given you a lot to reflect on and consider when building a treehouse may be an awesome component in your children's early childhood memories, but not always so good for your tree. If done right treehouses can add tremendous value to your property and last for 25 plus years with proper maintenance. Just be careful, use caution and be sure to hire a tree care company to inspect the tree prior to getting a treehouse built. You can search our site for credible tree care companies that can give you a tree inspection, certified Arborists will have knowledge pertaining to trees and if you have a tree that will suffice. Our guide on how to hire and what to look for in a tree care company should help.

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