Poor tree selection and placement
This Searsia lancea, planted too close to a boundary wall, has already had to be cut in half, and is lifting the paving.
Arguably the most common problem we find in gardens is poor tree selection and placement, often resulting in damaged boundary walls, the lifting of paving, or tree roots that interfere with house foundations. Unfortunately, it is all too tempting to place a young tree close to a boundary wall, either because the bed is not large enough, or because the home owner needs ‘instant’ screening from the neighbours, and does not take into account the full-grown height and width of the tree. From experience we know how difficult it can be for a home owner to plant a tree even one meter away from a wall – because the tree is still deceptively small, or because the home owner doesn’t want to use up too much lawn space. Often these trees become problems for the neighbours too, and the world of gardening is littered with disputes between home owners and their neighbours over the trees on their boundaries.
Trees such as this exotic Ceiba speciosa (Brazilian Kapok or Floss silk tree), whilst beautiful, can easily lift paving and crack boundary walls
If you have a tree that is starting to affect a boundary wall (docsbay.net/guidelines-on-tree-transplanting) , be proactive and remove the tree, or transplant it if it is still young enough. For new trees take into account the full-grown height and width of the tree and plant it accordingly. For small trees we would recommend a distance of at least 1.5 meters from the boundary wall, whilst larger trees should be planted at least 4-7meters away from walls and foundations.