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I live in a terraced house with small garden. The adjoining house has a monkey puzzle tree planted in their garden about 4 feet from the house which is obviously very close to our house. This tree was planted approximately 12 years ago and is now well established and over 6 feet tall. Will the roots cause damage to the foundations our house?
I am very concerned about this.



This tree has roots much like a conifer with a large tap root that goes straight down accompanied by smaller surrounding roots which are shallow and near the surface. So no problem to your foundation at all. The only problem would be any walkway or driveway nearby might be lifted up a bit by these near surface roots. The other problem would be roots entering the sewer drain from your home but that is a problem common caused by any tree growing near a home. Just check for this by getting your sewer scoped out to see if that problem is brewing.

19 Feb, 2017


Hi, welcome to GoY, monkey puzzle trees, or Araucaria araucana will eventually get to somewhere between 50 and 80 feet tall, and between 20 and 30 feet wide, so those vicious pointed leaves will very soon start to interfere with access to your door, {and your neighbours}, and so eventually need to be taken out, ask your neighbour to do it as soon as possible, the longer it stays there, the more it's going to cost, to have it taken out, and believe me it isn't a question of 'if' it's a question of when, these are trees for a very large garden or a park, not a terraced house front garden, Derek.

19 Feb, 2017


Derek: you see lots of these in terraced, tiny front gardens in London - the owners usually remove all the lower branches over time as they get in the way, eventually to the point where often, all that's left are a few right at the top, above the house, rather than take them out completely.

19 Feb, 2017


Contact Monty Don for help with designing your small garden. He may do it for his T/V programme, or send you ideas to help.

20 Feb, 2017


Hi Bamboo, yes I've seen them myself, to me it's a waste of a beautiful tree, I'd much rather see a specimen tree in an open space, so you get the full beauty of the natural shape,of what is a beautiful tree. Derek.

21 Feb, 2017


I agree, but I'm guessing that removing a tall specimen from a tiny front garden could cause some disruption to any paving around it, which might be why people leave them in situ. I've seen one in the Richmond/Kew area in a teeny tiny front garden that's a trunk higher than the house with about 8 short branches in a tuft right at the top - always makes me think of a chimney sweep's brush sticking up out of the chimney (now there's a memory from childhood...)

21 Feb, 2017


Yes you're right there Bamboo, that is ridiculous, but would probably cost a fortune to get it cut down, it's like having a thorough bred race horse pulling a plough, Derek.

21 Feb, 2017


So thats why I lost so much at the track.

21 Feb, 2017



22 Feb, 2017

How do I say thanks?

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