Tree lined drive

96AirwolfJuly 18, 2013

I would like some seasoned advice on my plans to transplant some large trees to border each side of my long dirt road. (Think oak alley)

I have identified 20 water oaks similar in size for this transplant and have found a tree mover who seems competent .

My question is one of aesthetics . I am considering maybe moving the road so it ends directly into the front door of the hose rather than off to the left . I am thinking the tunnel of trees should frame the house entry??? Not off to the side like it is. My only hesitation is that I don't want to close off the pasture views from the house as it is.

It may be neet however to look our the front door glass down the tunnel of trees.

I look forward to all your input!!

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Half way up drive

    Bookmark   July 18, 2013 at 2:15PM
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End of drive at house

    Bookmark   July 18, 2013 at 2:16PM
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Satellite view, house does not yet show up but is just below the tree in the lower pasture

    Bookmark   July 18, 2013 at 2:43PM
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This is what I am considering...

    Bookmark   July 18, 2013 at 7:16PM
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My mind is wandering back to the GA and SC plantations visited over the years trying to remember how allees ended at the house. Generally space is left between end of tree line and house front to accommodate visiting carriages, to keep acorns from dropping noisily on the roof or to provide space for horse associated activities. With some thought you should be able to achieve both your goals by considering house front distance to beginning of nearby tree line.

However, I have a concern about using water oaks for this project. It has been my experience that these are not reliable trees and are subject to falling over suddenly for no reason.
I have had three experiences where this has happened on sunny days with no wind. And arborists of my acquaintance tell similar stories. One of my experiences was a 'close call' when I was working with a customer siting a house in a heavily wooded lot. And, what is interesting about this type of situation, tree roots grow over each other and some graft onto neighboring roots yet this is not enough to support mature water oaks when they fill with water.

It appears that you want to use an evergreen tree and Live Oak is too slow growing. Although deciduous, the Natchez crape myrtle grows into a handsome allee. A less expensive solution perhaps?

    Bookmark   July 18, 2013 at 9:25PM
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I suggest you provide a picture of the view from inside the front door ("pasture views from inside") and pictures like your first three, taken from the proposed road location. I do not understand the last thumbnail pic of "what I am considering." It's too small.

Is there slope to the ground or is it just the camera lens?

Essentially, you are building a sheltering arcade-like covered passageway--a ceiling supported by regularly spaced posts--but out of living material. I suggest that it will be improved if:

... the "ceiling" is more cathedral-like than carport or parking garage-like; the best hope of maintaining distant views is if the canopy is raised sufficiently that one may view below it for some distance. Conversely, while entering the property, the view of the house will be improved if it's upper portion is not obliterated by a low hanging "ceiling."

... the support posts (tree trunks) are spaced at some comfortable distance away from the drive, creating a spacious feel rather than a cramped one. At a distance, the trunks will appear to form a wall. It will seem less inviting if pinched too tightly against the drive. After doing preliminary studies on paper, it would be useful to use a device (anything that's visible ... traffic cones ... poster board stapled to stakes, etc.) to mark out a proposed tree planting route in order to help visualize the relationship between the road, the house and the user.

I agree with Nandina that the tree-lined passageway would lead not to the house, but to the "courtyard" surrounding the house. There would be considerable space left around the house for all of its yard landscaping and services. I can't speak to the longevity of water oaks, but it would be a shame to create a superb landscape element only to provide it a short life. I'm in Florida and here laurel oak, once a popular tree to plant, is many times subject to dropping dead shortly after it achieves full stature ... while live oak can live for hundreds of years. (I do not find live oak to be all that slow growing, relatively speaking.) IMO it's better to begin with quality trees, but that are smaller if that's what it takes to fit within the budget. (Again, I'm not making a claim about water oaks, but am suggesting you research well prior to using.)

While it may not show up in the sat. view, there may be a clear reason why the "dog leg" route must be used. If not, I would consider smoothing it out for a more appealing entry.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2013 at 8:36AM
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