Viewing 12 posts - 1 through 12 (of 12 total)
  • New tree day – how close?
  • scruffythefirst
    Free Member

    We need some shade on the patio, and would like a couple of silver birch (betula pendula) for dappled shade.

    How close to our 1930s semi can I plant it as for it to provide mid afternoon shade it needs to be as close to the house as possible? There’s also a 1950s telephone exchange next door that would actually be closer, but I’m not too fussed about that.

    CheesybeanZ
    Full Member

    How far away is the nearest park . That’s the place for silver birch.

    slowol
    Full Member

    Our house insurance states no tree over 5m tall within 5m of the house. No idea if this is a good guide. I just tick the OK box as we have a Rowan that is about 7 or 8 m high but its trunk is nearly 6 m from the back wall so must be Ok (I hope).

    OwenP
    Full Member

    A cautionary tale for your dappled shade…:)

    Arbtalk birch problems

    That’s a public query forum too, so you can ask the same on there.

    scruffythefirst
    Free Member

    There’s 3 mature specimens in the front of the exchange next door, probably 10m from the building. They’re really tall but slim and cast perfect shade in the front now the enormous sycamore has been taken down. I guess the problem would be getting the right variety to keep that same shape.

    Any other tree varieties for a similar purpose? Sandy soil. Needs to be at least 10m or so to cast enough shade to reach the patio – the garden runs east – west and the patio is on the north side, nothing on the skyline down the whole south side.

    That Arb talk thread is a bit pathetic, 5k seems like a lot for a few roots.

    The tree would be on my property so would keep an eye on it, neighbours are unlikely to be fussed considering the hassle I’ve had getting rid of the ivy and sycamores destroying my fence, and they have several other enormous sycamores close to the exchange.

    Squirrel
    Full Member

    It varies with species and soil type (shrinkable clay being the most susceptible) but as a rule of thumb the distance between the building and tree should be at least equal to the mature height of the tree. Our silver birch is around 10m tall and hasn’t stopped growing yet…..

    squirrelking
    Free Member

    Why not something like willow that grows fast but can be chopped back when needed (thinking coppicing varieties rather than weeping)?

    konagirl
    Free Member

    The other ‘rule of thumb’ is roots might spread to three times the width of the canopy, so for a birch with a 6-10 m canopy diameter when fully grown, you should plant at least 10-15 m from walls, foundations and any known drains. I agree a silver birch isn’t a great choice for a garden, unless you have a massive garden! If you want dappled shade why not build a pergola structure and maintain a climber or two?

    sharkbait
    Free Member

    Why not something like willow that grows fast but can be chopped back when needed (thinking coppicing varieties rather than weeping)?

    Willows are notorious for completely screwing foundations (and patios). There’s zero chance I’d have a willow anywhere near a property.

    richmtb
    Full Member

    what about Rowan?

    Grows quickly but not quite as big as a birch. Foilage is perfect for “dappled shade”. Berries in autumn provide a bit of colour

    willyboy
    Free Member

    Have you considered putting a tree in a big planter instead? Pergola + climbers is a good suggestion too.

    squirrelking
    Free Member

    Willows are notorious for completely screwing foundations (and patios). There’s zero chance I’d have a willow anywhere near a property.

    Duly noted, we have a corkscrew cultivating but they seem to be less aggressive and if you keep on top of the crown should stay contained. I hope. Still early days so can move it as it matures if need be.

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