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Preserving Your Property:
Pruning Near Your Home

When it comes to sustainability, preserving your property is priority number one.

Pruning is important for more reasons than you'd expect.

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This Monterey Cypress was planted far too close to the house.​ By the time we got there, branches were pushing up against the window and structure. The homeowner had come to realize it was a fire risk.

The consequences of this are many:

  1. Roots will destroy buried wires and plumbing infrastructure.

  2. A tree this close produces lots of leaf litter up against the base of your house. This causes problems as shown in examples of rot.

  3. Once the tree gets tall, it can begin to drop leaf litter onto the roof, and clog rain gutters and drains.

  4. A tree too close to the house is a fire hazard. Vegetation can be a fuel source and bridge for the fire to reach the house. In this case, this Monterey Cypress tree is a “pyrophytic” or fire loving species, making it especially flammable.

  5. When too close to a house, branches provide a pathway for rats, squirrels, and other animals to become pests. From here, they can access the roof, utilities, and windows that are otherwise inaccessible. It also can hide entryways.

  6. Trees can get tangled up in utilities lines, power poles, and piping. It happens gradually over time, but it can later become a major fire hazard, and a costly interruption to your power.

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In all we removed roughly 70 small to mid-size trees from the perimeter of the building.

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The foliage and twigs were separated from the large woody material. The smaller material was strategically stacked to break down on site. The woody material was processed into straight poles for use in the landscape. 

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While a chipper could've been used on this job, we avoided using one due to their disruption, expense, and safety concerns. By cutting up the trees and sorting the materials we were able to compost the materials on site.

The lesson here is, if trees are in the immediate vicinity of your home, don't wait. Time is money when it comes to tree work. The longer you wait, the more likely it is to cost you. Vegetation should always be 18 inches away from a house, and a tree trunk should be no closer than 5 feet from the away. Any trunk closer is probably going to cause problems.

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