A chain-link fence is an excellent divide between properties in a neighborhood. However, if a tree starts growing next to the fence line, it can cause a lot of damage to the fence and issues between you and your neighbor.
A tree growing between the links of the fence can cause branches to intertwine while weighing down the fence as the tree grows taller and stronger. To avoid damage to the fence and the cost of installing a new one every so often, it is better to consider removing the tree growing next to your chain link fence.
How can you remove a tree from a chain-link fence without causing more damage or injury? Here is everything you need to know about how to remove a tree from a chain-link fence.
Determine how much damage has been caused
When planning to remove a tree growing on your chain link fence, the first thing you need to do is to assess the damage presented. Take a walk around the perimeter of your property and look for signs of damage on the fence. This gives you an idea of the extent of damage caused.
While trees grow through chain link fences for support, they eventually become too heavy for the fence, causing it to break, sometimes at not too visible points. This breakage can cause the fence to rust. If the chain fence is broken, it is best to consider installing a new one once the tree is removed.
Be cautious when cutting the tree
Even if the tree has not damaged your fence yet, it is wise to consider removing it to avoid future problems. You will need a handsaw, pruning saw, chainsaw, and loppers to safely remove a tree from a chain-link fence.
You need to ensure you have safety clothing before starting the tree removal process for personal safety. You will need goggles, a face shield, a long-sleeved shirt and long pants made from thick protective material, and steel-toe boots.
To remove a small tree:
- Cut the tree through the trunk just above the fence line. Push the trunk with your free hand as you saw through to remove the larger part of the tree.
- Clip any noticeable limbs sticking out of the fence on both sides. You can use loppers to get rid of the links and to loosen the trunk from the fence.
- Using the saw, cut through the base of the tree trunk close to the ground. Ensure you do this slowly to control the cut and avoid damaging the fence as you approach the other side of the tree.
- Once the tree is ready to fall, pull the trunk to the opposite side of the fence to snap it from the ground.
To remove a large tree:
- Cut the main trunk located above the chain-link fence to get rid of the larger part of the tree.
- Using the appropriate tool, cut through the side of the tree facing the fence in a V-shape north. Ensure the cut does not go more than a third through the tree’s diameter.
- Make the second cut by cutting through the tree horizontally on the side facing the fence opposite the V-shape cut. Ensure the horizontal cut is a few inches higher than the notch cut on the opposite side.
- This will direct the tree to fall away from the fence. Once the tree falls, you can chop it into smaller pieces and dispose of them properly.
- For the remaining tree trunk, make horizontal cuts towards the side of the fence and stop a few inches from the fence. Make these cut all the way down.
- Male vertical cuts down the stump of the tree, ensuring they remain inches from the fence line. This will cut through the horizontal cuts, making it easy to remove parts of the trunk to leave only a small trunk attached to the fence.
- Saw through the remaining part of the tree using a small hand saw as you cut slowly through the wood pieces while removing them from the fence.
Prevent trees from growing through the fence
To avoid going through the removal process in the future, it is best to ensure no trees will grow too close to your fence.
To prevent a tree from growing through your chain link fence:
Ensure there is a three-foot clearance on either side of the fence
As a rule of thumb, always create a 3-ft clearance around the fence. This means that you should have no vegetation near the fence except for grass for at least three feet on either side of your fence. Always assess the area to get rid of any saplings, bushes, or weeds that may grow in the area, as these can compromise the fence’s structural integrity.
Put mulch around your fence
Placing mulch around your fence will discourage the growth of new trees or unwanted plants. You can do this by creating a thin layer of mulch around the fence, ensuring the mulch covers the soil around the fence. This way, trees, and plants are less likely to grow around the covered areas.
Get rid of encroaching branches
It is also possible to prevent trees from growing through your chain link fence by eliminating any encroaching branches. Sometimes, trees can only damage fences if they grow limps through the fence. Cutting down the branches growing towards the fence is an ideal way of protecting the fence without cutting down the entire tree.
If you wait too long to remove the encroaching branches, you run a greater risk of having a damaged fence.
Get rid of overhanging branches
Fallen branches can also cause damage to your fence if the branch eventually detaches from the tree and falls on the fence. Always inspect the branches above the fence and cut down overhanging ones.
The bottom line
Chain link fences are not cheap to install. To prevent the need to reinstall your fence prematurely from tree damage, removing the tree encroaching on the fence space is sometimes the only solution to protect the fence’s integrity. With the tips mentioned in this article, including tips on how to remove a tree from a chain-link fence, you are better placed to protect your fence from tree damage.