Overgrown trees? Problems with trees that aren’t yours

Do you have a tree problem ?

Some trees are lovely, but some aren’t so nice,  some trees are well maintained and some are not – so what can you do with an overgrown tree and what can’t you do.

Arundel castle (41)
Nice Tree….
DSCF7829
Not so nice tree.

  These are the rules:

You can remove branches from trees or hedges that overhang your property, but only back to the line of the boundary.

You cannot remove any overhanging branches of any tree with a tree preservation order on it without planning permission – and the fines are hefty if you breach preservation orders.

Any removed branches belong to your neighbours, so ask what they want doing with them.

If you are removing large branches be extremely cautious, use a specialist tree surgeon.

Removing large branches can destabalise trees (which is not good), it can also stress the tree so much it begins to die off and so can become unsafe (which is not good) and less well known is that you can alter the ground water levels, which can lead to cracks in masonry for example (which is also not good).  Better to check first, than try to resolve expensive problems later.

If tall hedges are the problem, then there is a parliamentary act, the High Hedges Act, also known as the Lleylandii Law. This only applies to evergreen hedges or trees in a hedge (so no single trees are included), but if the hedge adversely affects your reasonable enjoyment of your property, you can apply to the local council to have the height reduced. The Council can then issue a notice to the owners of the hedge to reduce it in height. This Act only applies to hedges over 2m in height that affects domestic property. If you need further clarification then contact your local council offices.

Lastly, it is worth noting that if you have a large or overgrown trees on your premises, you are liable for any damage the tree or bits of it cause, so it is sensible to use a tree surgeon to check on the structural integrity of the tree.

Messy Trees and Untidy Plants!

Plants and trees do require some work and all make some mess, but some are worse than others. 

As the title says, all the shrubs or trees listed below are shaggy, scraggy, messy or generally untidy plants  – if you leave them to do their own thing.

They can look good and many have pretty flowers, but you will need to keep them well preened and coiffured if you want to enjoy them as much as you should.

Also these plants or trees drop shed loads of stuff, or drop loads of fruit or drop loads of big leaves that are a pain to clear up in the autumn. So if all these should be avoided if you like you garden to look neat and well tended.

Our list of the worst offenders! 

Bamboo – beautiful, but the leaves quickly shred in the wind. Best in a very sheltered spot

Buddleja – grows faster than your overdraft 

Campsis – this will grow about 3ft overnight and can pop up several feet away 

Chaenomeles – an ugly thorny tangled web but it does have pretty flowers

Cotoneaster – drops berries everywhere and always looks like a bad hair day!

Crataegus – Thorns, so it’s a killer to prune!

Fallopia – aka’ Mile-a-minute’ vine….actually it’s 2 miles a minute!

Fig trees – Big pink fig bombs, drunken wasps and the tree wood is easily broken

Hedera – Ivy, will cloak everything and then it drops leaves, berries and detritus

Humulus – Golden Hop, a pretty yellow vine….that swamps everything in it’s path

Jasmine – pretty flowers, the rest of the plant is really untidy & needs constant pruning

Lonicera – Honeysuckle, resembles a bowl of overcooked spaghetti after a couple of years

Lleylandii – big, dense, green, dark shrub/tree and it never stops growing

Mulberry – a very broad tree that drops millions of purple staining berries

Passiflora – A bit like Lonicera (honeysuckle)

Perovskia – A lovely plant but if you forget to ‘chelsea chop’ it flops everywhere

Phalaris – A very unattractive, scraggy and invasive ‘ornamental’ grasss

Philadelphus – A beautiful scent  but prone to looking leggy, woody and unattractive

Pryracantha – Lots of thorns & berries! 

Rubus – even more thorns and berries

Salix – A wild bad hair day of a plant that grows like wildfire. Needs a firm ‘talking to’ every year!

Solanum – Potato Vine it will end up a jumbled mess of tendrils and swamp lesser plants

Symphiocarpos – Snowberry this plant would survive the Apocaylpse it’s so hard to dig out

Vinca – a triffid of tangled tendrils collect around your feet and then trip you up

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