7 thoughts on “Building a Patio or Deck Around Trees”

  1. I am interested in extending my deck around a mature sycamore tree. The trunk root circumference is 51″. How far away from the tree should we stay with the decking and what precautions need to be taken with the footings?

    1. Give yourself as much room as you can live with so the tree has room to grow before you have to alter your decking. The answer to this question is a product of time vs. altering the decking. I’d want to keep at least 6-8″, if not more. Regarding the footings, use an airspade to dig. An airspade is a high powered air compressor that blows away the dirt without cutting through roots. That way you can be sure to avoid cutting very large roots.

  2. I have a 100-year-old Live Oak out in Round Top and want to have some kind of patio/ground cover underneath to support a table and chairs. Would a combination flagstone and crushed granite be ok in terms of water and oxygen getting to the roots?

    1. This should be fine. I’ve not experienced tree problems when patio grade ground covers are installed. Just make sure you are not excavating roots to or building dirt against the trunk to level the area.

  3. We are going to have a stamped concrete patio poured in our backyard, and have a locust tree and a small maple tree in the yard. How much room do you recommend for us to leave around the circumference of the tree trunks? Thanks!

  4. I live in Pflugerville, and want to build an island around two trees about 12-14 ” round. The islands were going to be about 8′ x4′ around each tree with a fake brook of Marble stone going from one corner of the front yard , under a bridg between each island and a small pond in fromt close to the side walk. the islands were going to be about 12 – 14″ high because of root compact, making it impossible to plant anything at ground level. Now I hear that I should build a area around the tree to keep it clear because of rotting at the trunk area. Just how far should this area be, or should I just cancle this project and leave it bare, grass only. I had plans to make a Gnowm and Farie land under the trees sorounded by flowers that would be imppossible to plant without the islands. Should I cancle my project as a danger to the trees?

  5. We are building a paver patio and yesterday (Aug 9) the builders cut 2 medium roots and one med-lg root. They also compact the gravel with a machine under the paver area. Is our Chanticleer Pear in doomed? (10 years old, 30 feet tall, zone 5b)

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