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Tree-friendly & Safe Treehouses

Tree-friendly & Safe Treehouses
July 18, 2011 SNH Editorial Team

This is one landscaping ideas most kids and adults love:  Build an arboreal retreat. First step: Evaluate your trees.  Even a handy homeowner or an experienced carpenter may wonder:  Are our trees  strong enough?  The second question that typically comes to mind is:  What  treehouse construction methods are safe for trees and inhabiting humans? Serious contemplations lead to more questions, such as:  Does the treehouse damage the tree?

There are some important construction details to get right when building treehouses. Start by using the best tree attachment methods. Custom fasteners called TABs or Treehouse Attachment Bolts are the preferred choice of the professionals. They allow loads to be perched away from the trunk, allowing the tree to grow over time. Special floating brackets are available to allow a multiple tree platform to sway in the breeze with minimal restrictions on tree movement. TABs, depending on size, tree species, and installation specifications, can safely support 2000 to 20,000+ pounds.

There are several national companies that specialize in custom treehouse construction. Tree Top Builders, in West Chester, PA, builds about 30 tree houses each year. Don’t expect to find a specialist close to home, but all of the major treehouse building companies travel. They can provide full service from consultation, design, construction, maintenance, and additions.

To build a high quality and strong treehouse yourself or with your local builder, consider buying a treehouse plan with alt/title tags set to “treehouse plans”.  Find standard plans, custom design services, hardware and accessories like rope swings and zip lines at one source. Using a plan created by professional treehouse builders and using TABs for the treehouse bolts will help keep the trees safe and make the project safe for many years or decades.