If you are planning construction on your property, it is important to take care of trees. The building process can affect trees as much as trees may affect the building process. Before you get started, you must prepare your area and take measures to protect your tree.
First of all, examine all the trees currently growing in the construction area. They may turn out to be old, weak and sick so it may be easier to remove them (cross link to how to decide to remove a tree) than try to save and protect it. Especially if a tree tends to fall and damage something or hurt someone. In this case, you don’t need to care about protection — just call an arborist, consult and order cutting down.
Another case when a tree must be removed is when it’s located to a future construction closer than in 5-10 feet. The exact distance depends on a tree’s size. It would be perfect if the same distance is kept to fences, walls or property borders. If a tree is growing too close, it will interfere with work and most probably will be polluted heavily during the work process. For such cases, there is also an option of relocation. But this is a complex process that is not always possible: contact your local tree service office for a consultation.
If there is no need to remove a tree and you decide to keep it, there are several main measures to help the tree to overcome the building process.
- Surround the tree with a fence. Usually, fencing is guided by the root system. Its radius is approximately equal to the tree crown. Fence at least 50% of the radius. Use standard temporal construction fence you can purchase in your local household store.
- Make a restriction sign. Best to make sure that there will be no foot or vehicle traffic on the root zone. But don’t nail a sign to a tree: make a post or attach it to a tree without piercing it.
- Keep materials, tools, clothes or any other construction items away from a tree. Such things are always dirty with materials that will poison the tree in most cases. Also, don’t pour any polluted water and don’t leave material leftovers near the trees.
- Place woodchips on the root zone. This will prevent chemicals and debris from penetrating into the soil.
- Water trees. Even if you take all the precautions, a tree will suffer a lack of water. Schedule additional watering once a week.
Sometimes trenches must be dug near the tree: for example, for underground pipes. If so, make sure that the distance to the trunk is not less than 8 feet. Otherwise digging can damage roots and hurt the tree heavily. When the piping is finished, fill in the trench as soon as you can so the tree doesn’t have to suffer additional stress caused by exposed roots.
There is no need to cover trees with something. Just let them live as usual but take additional care we have described. Always take into consideration that trees are important to the ecology system and must be saved if possible. So, if you are not sure if it’s possible to save the tree, contact professionals for competent advise.