How to screw into a tree

The Treehouse Guide - Hardware for attaching a tree house

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Home > Building advice > Supports > Fixtures and fastenings

Types of support | Flexible supports | Rigid framed supports | Fixtures and fastenings | Metal brackets | Cables
Knee braces | Dangerous things to avoid | Non-flat surfaces | Improving stability | Building without trees

To attach your treehouse to a tree, you have to bear two things in mind: trees are alive, continually growing outwards, and joints between treehouse and tree will be subject to a lot of stress from people inside and strong winds. Both these effects put a lot of pressure on the fixtures holding the support beams to the tree.

Nails and bolts

Although nails are cheap, you should buy galvanised bolts to fix your supports as they are much stronger and you will only need a small number. You can drill a hole right through the tree and fit a long bolt, or you can use lag bolts (sometimes called coach screws). These are like giant screws with hexagonal heads that tighten into a pre-drilled hole. Lag bolts are generally the best thing to use because the pre-drilled hole in the tree only has to be the length of the bolt less the beam thickness, not the entire diameter of the tree as is necessary with full bolts. This means the holes can be drilled using a normal drill bit. A socket wrench or spanner can be used to tighten the bolts, but a wrench usually gives better leverage and will not slip as easily as a spanner.

Pre-drill using a bit the same diameter as the internal part of the threaded section
- in this case about two thirds the diameter of the non-threaded section


To increase the strength of the wood to tree joint when using bolts, add a large washer between the beam and the tree. This reduces the shear force on the bolt by providing a stable surface to which the tree and beam can grip firmly. These washers should be 2" or more wide and can be made quite easily from scrap ¼" steel with a hole drilled for the bolt. They are sometimes sold as deck washers or simply large square washers. Washers, like bolts, should be galvanised for rust protection. A standard washer should also be used under the head of the bolt to spread the load into the beam.

Treehouse attachment bolts (TABs)

These are extra large bolts specifically designed for use in treehouse construction. They have a wide, coarsely threaded core that bolts into the tree, then a wide flange to spread the load over a wider area of the tree's surface. TABs can sustain loads of 2000lb or more, so they are often used in a cantilever method to 'perch' beams away from the surface of the tree. This allows the tree to continue growing outwards without being restricted by the beam, ideally for the life of the treehouse. There is a large range of accessories to compliment TABs such as cable eyes, knee brace brackets and floating brackets. Unfortunately TABs are much more expensive than lag bolts and require a special drill bit to form the correctly shaped hole, but for large treehouses there is no better way of attaching supports to the tree. Further details can be found at Nelson Treehouse Supply or Tree House Supplies.

Tree damage

Read through the page on tree damage to learn how to reduce the damage you cause when the supports are fixed to the tree.

The 'rising treehouse' effect

Although trees grow in height, this does not mean the treehouse will get lifted higher and higher over the years. See the trees FAQ.

Types of support | Flexible supports | Rigid framed supports | Fixtures and fastenings | Metal brackets | Cables
Knee braces | Dangerous things to avoid | Non-flat surfaces | Improving stability | Building without trees


Do Nails, Screws, or Staples Hurt Trees?

Resources: Community

Many homeowners use nails and screws to hang decorations, lights, and even build treehouses in their trees. But most never stop to think if nails, screws, and staples will hurt their tree. The truth of the matter is, yes, using nails, screws, and staples can hurt your tree and cause serious health issues in the long run. Read on to find out what health issues are caused by using nails, screws, and staples and what you can do to reduce the effect these items have on trees.

Damage Caused By Using Nails, Screws, and Staples on Trees:

Putting nails, screws, and staples into your tree can cause a host of problems ranging from increased disease susceptibility to physical damage all of which can lead to the tree’s death.

Disease and Decay Susceptibility:

The outer bark of the tree is there to protect against disease and decay. When you pierce that outer layer you are creating a wound that can get infected by diseases, fungi, and can be used as an entrance for insects. 

Damages the Cambium:

Nailing, screwing, or stapling anything to your tree pierces the cambium of the tree. The cambium is a very thin layer of growing tissue that produces new cells that become either xylem, phloem or more cambium. Injuring this part of the tree can disrupt water and nutrient flow between the roots and canopy. 

Tree Will Grow Around The Object:

Using nails, screws, and staples on trees can be dangerous for humans as well. As the tree continues to grow it will grow around the nail, screw, or staple and you will not be able to remove it. This makes it dangerous to prune or remove the tree using a chainsaw at a later date. 

Other Ways To Attach Items To Trees:

Strap at least an inch and a half thick (anything thinner can hurt the tree). A thick strap will keep it from digging into the tree and causing physical damage. Just remember to keep an eye on the strap and loosen it as your tree grows over the years.

How To Reduce Negative Health Effects:

Although our Arborists suggest you don’t use nails, screws, or staples on your tree we understand that many people already have and will continue to do so. In these cases, we suggest you follow the steps below in order to reduce the negative health effects your tree will suffer from using these items.

Before you use nails, screws, or staples:

  1. Choose stainless steel nails, screws, or staples. Rust is bad for trees and can lead to a lot of problems down the road. To eliminate the chance of rust use stainless steel items.
  2. Avoid young trees (under 10inches dbh), thin-barked trees, and already weakened trees. These types of trees will have a harder time recovering from the damage caused by nails, screws, or staples.
  3. Make as few holes as possible. The more holes the more stress you put on the tree and the higher the risk of insect and disease issues. Depending on the tree’s size, health, and species, as little as 10 holes could cause enough structural and health issues to kill the tree.

After you use nails, screws, or staples:

After you damage your tree with nails, screws, or staples you will need to help it recover and heal.

Mulching: Mulching insulates the tree’s roots and helps them retain moisture both of which will help your tree recover from physical injuries. Learn more about Mulching. 

Bio-Stimulants: Bio-stimulants are a great way to give your tree all the nutrients it needs to recover. This organic fertilizer will help keep your tree healthy and improve its “immune system”. Learn more about Bio-Stimulants. 

Watering: Keeping your tree hydrated can help reduce the effects of physical injury and help the tree recover. Take care to NOT water where the holes are as this will increase the chance of rot and decay. Learn more about Watering.

Need help keeping your tree healthy after using nails, staples, or screws? Give us a call at 703-573-3029 or book a consult using our online booking system. 

Meaning, Definition, Suggestions . What is crashing into a tree

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Meaning of the word "RUN"

something narrow, sharp.

See all meanings of the word CUT

Meaning of the word "B"


See all meanings of the word B

Meaning of the word "TREE"

Perennial plant with a solid trunk and branches extending from it, forming a crown.

See all meanings of WOOD0037

Don't make me hit a tree.

Well, he wanted to hit a tree.

Other results

Natural rubber comes from the latex of the rubber tree, which is obtained by cutting into the layers of the bark of the rubber tree.

Her car went off the road and hit a tree.

She then felt a strong surge of magic, and a huge fireball crashed into the tree.

Nobody stops riding a bike just because they hit a tree.

It was like the blade of a large, sharp butcher's ax went through the meat and crashed into the wood of the deck.

Ray's car went off the road and crashed first into Colin and then into a tree. She was pinched.

You left the road and hit a tree.

So you hit a tree, the airbag deployed... and you got a ruptured kidney from a frontal impact?

He hit a tree while drunk last Christmas.

His 4th heart attack happened while driving and then he crashed into a tree.

The car began to skid, the driver could not control it. Tearing off a road sign and losing her headlight, she crashed into a tree with a crash.

The car tire burst, we hit a tree and I ran into the forest.

His car crashed into a tree in the suburbs of London when he was in his early 30s.

That the deputy drove the car under a degree, crashed into a tree, braked another car where Mrs. Smalls was. He drove her car and thumped down the cliff.

54 people crashed into a tree around that time, 15 of them were white men in their 30s.

The driver had a heart attack and the car crashed into a tree.

Nobody stops riding a bike just because they hit a tree.

Sometimes George crashes into a tree, and sometimes...

He must fly to the target and back through the forest without crashing into any tree.

His balloon hit a tree when he tried to land next to us.

Clear ice, and you make a 180-degree turn and hit a tree with your trunk?

Watch them crash into the tree from top to bottom.

During filming, Reeves dislocated his shoulder when his chariot crashed into a tree; he damaged it again while swimming in the subsequent underwater escape scene.

Scorpion fired a second time, but Cage dodged it, and he fatally crashed into a tree.

Meanwhile, Burr, unaware of the oath, knew that a shell from Hamilton's cannon whistled past him and crashed into a tree behind him.

They again use the power of defense to save themselves when they nearly crash Martin Garson's car into a tree, almost killing themselves.

On February 10, 2017, an Audi A8 L carrying Prime Minister Beata Szydło crashed into a tree in the city of Auschwitz at approx.

Vogel shoots and kills Milton, who crashes into a tree.

This page contains the definition (meaning) of the phrase / expression "hit a tree", as well as synonyms, antonyms and sentences, if they are available in our database. We strive to make the English-Grammar.Biz explanatory dictionary, including the interpretation of the phrase / expression "crash into a tree", as correct and informative as possible. If you have suggestions or comments about the correctness of the definition of "hit a tree", please write to us in the "Feedback" section.

A man stole a UAZ and crashed into a tree on the territory of the PNI in St. Petersburg October 5, 2022 - October 7, 2022


October 7, 2022, 11:20

4 comments . Thus ended an attempt by a Petersburger to ride in someone else's car on the territory of a psycho-neurological boarding school.

At about three o'clock in the morning on October 5, one of the leaders of PNI No. 6 on Primorskoye Highway in Smolyachkovo contacted the police and said that a man had been caught on the territory of the boarding school, who had taken possession of a UAZ car. Arriving at the scene, the police detained a 30-year-old Petersburger. At about two o'clock in the morning, he, using the open door of the car, got behind the wheel of a "loaf" and crashed into a tree on the territory of the PNI. Fontanka became aware of this on October 7th.

The stolen car was inspected and handed over against a safe receipt. The next day, a criminal case was initiated under Part 1 of Art. 166 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation (illegal possession of a car without the purpose of theft). The detained man was released on a promise to appear.

More news in our official telegram channel Fontanka SPB online . Subscribe to be the first to know about important things.


  • A resident of Nikolsky stole a car from his cohabitant and got stuck in the bushes St. Petersburg State University

    May 04, 2022, 13:29

  • The stolen Camry was found battered near a fire reservoir near St. Petersburg June 17, 2022, 11:16

  • An employee left the entrepreneur without a “workhorse” in St. Petersburg, and in the region the general director stole the car from the general director

    June 30, 2022, 12:19

  • 0034 06 July 2022, 13:19



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