Can You Put A Shed Under A Tree?

You can use a shed for many things on your property, storage, a workshop, or for the kids’ social enjoyment. So it’s essential to place the shed in an optimal position according to its intended purpose.

You can place a shed under a tree, but it will create more work in terms of maintenance. Like regularly cleaning leaves, twigs, and dust from the roof. You’ll need to trim branches to make sure none are hanging on the roof, trapping any moisture that leads to mold growth and eventually rots.

The primary reason you’ll have to do more maintenance is because of the leaves and twigs falling from the tree. I suggest doing maintenance after heavy winds or storms. Also, take time to trim branches that might have grown to the point where they pose a threat to the roof of the shed.

Most trees also have old dead branches that break and drop at some point in time. So doing a regular check-up on the trees is a must.

You’ll also need to consider the natural elements as, with heavy winds, the chances of the dead branches dropping on the roof are greater now that the shed is positioned under the trees.

All these factors and many more make maintaining your shed more difficult if it’s under a tree.

Issues That Can Arise

Growing Roots

If you’re putting your shed under young trees, you’ll have to do some research on those trees in the area, because some trees have roots that grow very close to, or even above, the ground surface.

If you do not find any information on the trees in your area, take a photo of the trees to your local nursery to get more info on them.

If the trees in your area are known to have shallow root systems, it would be best to choose a different area on the property or have the small tree/trees relocated if possible.

Damage From Root Groth

Tree roots can cause the base (foundation) to crack if the tree’s root system is very shallow on the ground’s surface and grows into the base of the shed.

The root system will eventually grow to the point where it will break apart the base and you’ll need to redo it and move the shed to a different area of your property.

The following list of trees are just a few known to have shallow roots, so if any of these grow on your property you’ll have to take extra precautions in planning for a raised base.

  • Maple
  • Sycamore
  • Willow Oak
  • Pin Oak
  • Lindens
  • Black Walnut

If none of the listed trees are in your area, I suggest doing a bit more research on the trees that are growing in your yard.

Moisture Build Up

Moisture is a shed’s worst enemy and with all the shade under trees, it may take longer for the moisture to evaporate, which can be very harmful to a shed.

If the leaves, twigs, etc are left for a longer period of time and not regularly removed, it will speed up any moisture damages that might be caused by falling branches or lifted materials. This includes the gutters if you have them installed on the shed.

Falling Tree Branches

This is another issue that can arise during heavy storms and high winds. It will cause old dead tree branches to break off the trees and drop on the roof, puncturing or denting the material, and causing major damage.

This is why you should trim any branches that are growing towards the roof of the shed. And if it’s possible, take time to look for any old branches that may pose a threat in the future and remove them ahead of time.

This will reduce the chances of damages occurring during any future high winds or storms that may come to your area.

Preventing Root Damage 

Roots are easily overlooked when a person starts a project. I suggest walking over the area that you’re planning on using for the project.

Begin by looking for any signs of shallow roots popping up, or small trees that will be a problem down the line. This can pose problems in the future, luckily this is something that can be dealt with in multiple ways.

The best way to prevent your shed base from being destroyed by roots is to raise the base of the shed. Avoid using post-crete, Instead, use original concrete as you want the shed to have good support and last for years to come. 

Maintaining The Roof Of Debris 

If you’re planning on placing the shed near or under a tree, there are a few things that you’ll want to do regularly for maintenance.

  • Regularly trim the overhanging branches.
  • Clearing the twigs and leaves out the gutters, if the shed has any.
  • Look for any damaged roof materials from fallen branches
  • Look for any signs of moisture build-up and find the source thereof.

How Close Can You Build Your Shed To A Tree?

A general rule of thumb to keep your shed clear from a tree is to erect it as far away from the tree as the tree’s height so that the tree can’t fall onto it. There are different sizes and many uses for sheds. In certain countries, some zoning laws involving the shed require it to be a certain distance from your house or the perimeter of your property.

For instance, if you’re planning on using the shed for crafting things such as custom knives, there are materials involved like hot metals, and metal shavings from the sanding, then there are the chemicals to harden the metal, therefore you’ll need a good amount of airflow in the shed.

This means that a shed used for a purpose like this can not be placed in a closed-off area because it needs a constant flow to keep chemicals and heat out of the shed.

Benefits Of Placing Your Shed Under A Tree.

It will help avoid long-term sun damage with the tree providing a fair amount of shade. So you won’t have to treat the wood with wax or varnish as often if it’s in the shade.

Another advantage of having your shed in the shade is that it will be cooler inside. You can be sure anything like gas that is being stored in the shed will be safe as a hot shed does not sit well with chemicals like gasoline.

Because there will be less direct heat on the shed, there is also the benefit of the materials not contracting and expanding too much throughout their lifespan, so there will be less of a chance that there will be small gaps trapping any moisture that may lead to any significant damages in the future.


So you can put a shed under a tree. As long as you are willing to spend extra time on the maintenance by clearing off leaves, and twigs, and trimming overgrown branches. You need to do this to prevent moisture from building up and sitting for a long period of time damaging the materials.

Make sure that your property does not contain any of the above-mentioned trees with shallow root systems that can damage the floor in years to come.

Of course, a tree will keep your shed cooler in the summer, but I would rather suggest insulating against heat and facing the windows to the east for the morning sun only.

Manny Moore

Getting my hands dirty and building a place that me and my small family love is a driving factor for what I do and how I do it. I want to share what I have learned and practiced so that it is just that much easier for everyone to have another tool in their tool belt. Your home should be a place that you love and feel comfortable in and your backyard should be no different.

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