A listener to the Len Tillem show writes about her neighbor's encroaching Redwood tree:
My neighbor has a 300 ft. Redwood tree planted in the corner of her yard next to the fence which adjoints my fence and the other two neighbors.The trunk of the tree is approximatly 6 feet & has pushed into my yard forcing me to adjust my fence to make room for the bottom of the trunk. I only have a partial fence in that corner area now.
The tree has sprouted a new tree from the trunk which is going to cause further problems as it grows. I've requeste that she have a tree firm come out & use a chain saw and trim all the sprouts around the tree so our fence will not have further problems. She has ignored all my written requests.
Should I send a registered letter to her on the problem and go to court if she does nothing? What are my alternatives! Also will the tree cause problems when we want to sell our house? Thanking you in advance for your reply on this matter.
Rammed by a Redwood
Land Use News Responds:
Thank you for writing and for listening to the Len Tillem Show. Your problem is not unusual. Your neighbor's tree has outgrown its area, and is encroaching on yours. You have the right to trim the tree to the property line so long as you do not damage the tree's health. You may trim off the sprouts that are growing into your yard.
As for the damage to the fence, yes, certainly do send her a letter, as she will be liable. She may want to contact her insurance company. If your letter doesn't work, make sure you document the damage and see about having an attorney write a letter. You might also want to consult an arborist about the condition of the tree. Depending on where it is, its health and soil conditions, it could pose even greater problems as time goes by.
You also do not say where you are. In some areas a redwood is a protected tree, and in others it is considered undesirable.
Best of luck.