Charlie Glahe WIN Broomfield

Planting don'ts: Flora that will take over a yard


Plants can be the perfect addition to any home, both inside and out, and great landscaping can really boost home equity and put a house over the top when it is on the market. Every little element helps when going for a sale, so there isn't much harm in planting the perfect tree outside, but some trees and shrubs can be more trouble than they look.

Even if a little gardening is solely for the homeowner's benefit, make sure to avoid planting these troublesome varieties.

Rooting out the problem
A thorn in many homeowners' sides is surprise plumbing and foundation problems caused by tree roots. For some, a checklist of all the problems that could plague a home doesn't involve invasive trees. The beauty that is visible above ground can often distract from the roots creeping closer toward a home below, and a property inspection might help figure out any problem areas. 

Therefore, a great method for stopping any root damage is to figure out why trees are growing closer to foundations and plumbing pipes. According to Blue Sky Plumbing, it doesn't happen without reason. All types need the resources and the space to grow, and that means outward as well as upward.

The larger a tree becomes, the larger the root system is, and the greater the hazard. Additionally, water is a great resource for every tree, and a fast, easy source is right nearby - the plumbing. Most pipes don't have the strength to keep out invasive roots, so the task falls to the homeowner or landscapers when deciding where to plant a new tree. It is crucial to keep trees far away from any fragile home systems, and calculate for future growth as well. 

Invasive plants to avoid
Dangerous trees come in several different forms, and one main culprit for home damage is the willow tree. A beautiful, giant type, these frequently grow near rivers and streams and require a healthy water supply. While it may be desirable to add a weeping willow to the backyard, its roots commonly seek out the plumbing. Most yards aren't designed to support this tree, so be wary before planting, according to Blue Sky Plumbing.

Not only can the plumbing take a beating, but the foundation can too. Many landscapers use certain types of shrubs, like boxwood, to improve a home's esthetics. Often planted right near a home, its shallow roots have been known to attack a foundation. While holly bushes and shrubs are beautiful, when not watered and fed properly they will seek out a new source. Frequently planted right next to a home, any small opening in the foundation or plumbing will let the roots right in. Holly has been reported to even grow new plants inside the pipes, which can cause a lot of damage overall. 

Moreover, other types of plants are dangerous, not just trees. Bamboo is highly invasive, and even a single stalk can spread and take over a space. Be careful before adding one into a home, because it soon might dominate the landscape. More adventurous homeowners might be tempted to plant Japanese stiltgrass, but beware - it grows so fast that as it is ripped out of the ground the plants next to it will move in to fill the empty space, according to Houselogic. 

Ivy looks unique, and can be an exciting feature to a wall. Naturally, it climbs, so homes have been known to get damaged when the ivy reaches the roof and rips away shingles or cracks masonry, stated. When plants start to move in a little too close, a home inspection might help spot any cracks in the foundation or plumbing.