Do You Have Trees Growing Out Of Your Gutters?

It is not unusual for me to be walking around someone’s property with them and for us to notice something occurring that the Client was completely unaware of prior to doing so.

This can range from a water stain that had gone unnoticed, to rotted wood, to a coyote living in their back shed (true story!)…you name it!

Besides opening the door to your shed in the process of checking something out and instead finding a coyote peacefully sleeping, there are other items that are often discovered that are also unnerving.

One such discovery that falls into this category is when a tree (or a plant in general) is found to be growing in someone’s gutter system.

Though I am not a plant expert, it does not take a botanist to know that if a tree or plant is growing in someone’s gutter, the conditions obviously have to be ripe for it to be doing so.

One recent pre-Thanksgiving Day morning, I was conducting a walkthrough around someone’s home with them and we both were a bit astonished to find a Christmas Tree (yes, literally a Christmas Tree!) growing out of the gutter system in the rear of their home.

While not necessarily the most cherished memory associated with the Holidays that the Client may wish to remember, and although not exactly what the Client wanted to see during our walk, it clearly was also a Blessing in disguise.

The tree called our attention to look deeper into an area of the home that was in severe disrepair.

If the tree had not been seen, at that moment we may not have discovered how gravely damaged the entire area encompassing the tree had become.

On my end, it allowed me to provide initial pricing to the Client which was more in-line with what the cost of the project would ultimately end up being vs. discovering this great amount of damage after the project had already begun and then having to break the news to the Client at that time.

On the Client’s end, although extraordinarily disheartening, at least this finding provided better insight in terms of what they were truly going to be up against as the project was delved into.

Certainly, this is a dramatic example of coming across things you may not normally do so in a day in and day out basis, but nonetheless, it is a real-world sample of what may indeed be found when doing an inspection around your home and homing in on potential problematic key areas.

Not every time someone finds a tree or plant growing out of their gutter will lead to such a significant undertaking as this situation will end up being.

Many times, trees and plants seen growing out of someone’s gutter system are simply stemming from a small pile of decaying matter in the gutter and are easily cleaned out.

Other times they may call attention to a gutter system which is clogged and needs some cleaning and flushing in order to free itself of debris and become properly functioning again.

Whatever the case, my suggestion is to not get discouraged by seeing a tree (or plant) growing out of your gutter system and automatically assume that you have a real problem on your hands.

While this may end up being true, it may only be a call for some type of routine maintenance which needs to occur.

I believe this should actually be looked at as a positive, kind of like your gutter system raising its hand and saying, “Yoohoo, over here! We have an issue that needs to be looked at, please help!!”

Just be sure to listen, because ignoring this once seen, truly could lead to bigger problems down the line which could have been avoided if the opportunity to look further into things was done once awareness was raised that something funky may be going on.

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