How Do Climbing Vines Cause Damage?
The majority of climbing plants in Minneapolis can “climb” due to either sticky aerial roots, adhesive disks, or twining tendrils. Vines with aerial roots have small, root-like structures that grow out of the stem and attach to textured surfaces like wood and masonry. Some vines have adhesive pads that allow them to attach to smooth surfaces. Vines that twine wrap their stems around a support and will climb posts, poles, and fences.
Damage to homes is typically caused by plants that have aerial roots or adhesive disks due to the way they attach to the structure, although twining tendrils have been known to wind their way behind parts of the structure and wreak havoc.
All three types of climbing plants can cause damage to siding by either growing up behind it and loosening it or attaching to the siding in such a way that it pulls the siding away from the home when the vines are removed.
Shingles are often damaged in a similar way to siding. When climbing vines are allowed to grow up to the roof line they will often grow on top of and under the shingles, tearing them off the roof and damaging them.
Vines, especially thick ones, hole A LOT of moisture. When vines are allowed to grow on building surfaces like roofs and wood siding they will retain moisture, holding it against these vulnerable areas and causing water damage and rot.
Once again, gutters are at risk of being pulled away from the home when climbing vines grow up into the crevices behind them. Additionally, climbing vines may begin to grow inside the gutters which impedes their function and weighs them down causing them to eventually fail.
While vines don’t often cause major damage to masonry that is solid and well-installed, a lot of masonry is not actually solid. Whether your masonry is old and damaged or it wasn’t installed properly, climbing vines will get into loose joints and mortar causing further loosening and more damage.
Some climbing plants can damage your foundation in the same way they would damage other masonry. If there are any cracks or vulnerable spots in the foundation, the plants will grow into these spaces making them bigger and retaining moisture. This can become a major problem, over time, and can compromise the structural integrity of your home.
Should You Remove Climbing Plants from Your Home?
In short – maybe. It is possible to safely have climbing plants on your home, but it requires appropriate research and care. If you’re determined to have climbing vines on your home there are some important things to remember.
- Research the types of vines that are best for the Minneapolis climate and least damaging to a home.
- Perform proper maintenance including regular pruning and inspection of the property.
- Give your chosen vines an appropriate surface to climb – this may mean installing a trellis 4-6 inches away from your home to give the illusion of vines climbing the home while keeping your home safe from damage.
If you’re not ready to give up on your dreams of a sprawling Minneapolis home with vines reaching for the sky, Gutter Maids in Minneapolis can help you keep the vines in check with regular trimming and high ladder work for hard-to-reach places. If those dreams seem like just a little too much, now, we can help with that too with a complete vine removal. Whatever you decide, we’re happy to help!