The Q&A Archives: tree close to retaining wall

Question: We have installed a retaining wall. It is 9 feet tall at the tallest point. It has a staircase that leads to the top. I want to plant a crepe myrtle (Natchez)at some point at the top. I have sculpted a curving flower bed in this area. My question: how far from the retaining wall should I plant the tree? My concern is how much pressure the tree roots may exert on the wall. Thank you in advance.

Answer: Lagerstroemia indica x fauriei 'Natchez' grows to about twenty feet tall and wide. I would suggest a minimum of at least ten feet back from the wall to allow space for the roots. Another reason not to bring it too close to the edge is that the soil will be extra dry along the wall. To some extent too it depends on how your wall is constructed. You might want to consult with your landscape architect who designed the wall.

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