Planting Arborvitae for Privacy near Homes and Other Structures
Homes owners planting a row of Arborvitae for privacy should consider the following:
Risk of tree falling on structure: Arborvitae as generally lightweight trees with a relatively large canopy. Serious or structural damage from a fallen Arborvitae is unlikely.
Foundational damage: Arborvitae has shallow roots, only occupying the top 10 Inches of the soil. They are generally smaller roots and damage to foundations is unlikely. However, some common sense distance of a few feet from homes is still sensible.
Wildlife: while most newer varieties Arborvitae are developed to be deer resistant, squirrels and other rodents will commute on them with ease. Don't provide them with a highway to your rooftop by planting the Arborvitae right next to your home.
As common sense courtesy, most homeowners believe it is prudent to plant a row of Arborvitae within 2 feet of the property boundary.
In conclusion, we would not plant Arborvitae closer than 5 feet of a home or closer than 18 inches of a driveway.
Mature Green Giant Arborvitae lining a backyard in Chicago, IL