The Q&A Archives: Willows and Houses

Question: I am planning on planting a weeping willow in my front yard but have been told that the roots could crack the foundation of my house. If this is ture how far does the tree need to be planted from my home?

Answer: Willows do have the reputation for seeking water and with their vigorous root systems, can cause problems with water lines, leach lines, sidewalks, etc. These trees are not for small yards. However, I found a willow variety called 'Golden Curls' that is described as "golden-barked, weeping corkscrew willow with curly leaves. Ideal for the small garden. Ht. 30'." Just for general reference, tree roots tend to reach out nearly twice as far as the dripline of the canopy so you'll want to plant your tree far enough away from your foundation so you won't have problems in the future. Have you considered other types of "weeping" trees, such as weeping cherry? It might be a viable alternative. Best wishes with your landscape!

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