Where a tree emerges from the ground, the landowner is responsible for all actions of said tree. Fruit fall, slip hazards, root damage and damage caused by fallen branches become the responsibility of the owner. As you can imagine, choosing an appropriate tree is important from the very beginning.
Usually, ‘fastigiate’ trees are better suited for boundary plantings. These trees have a very upright, narrow growth habit, which means less overhanging branches and less potential damage.
Most common tree species have a fastigiated hybrid, Betula Pendula‘Fastigiata’, Carpinus Betulus ‘Fastigiata’, Ginkgo Biloba ‘Fastigiata’, Quercus palustris ‘Green Pillar’, Acer p. ‘Crimson Sentry’. There is also an evergreen magnolia Magnolia g. ‘Alta’ which is also fastigiated.
Hedges are another good option, but the neighbouring properties should be taken into consideration. Most hedges will need to be clipped between two and four times a year depending on species, so when planting a hedge, be aware of the ongoing requirements.
Trees are a beautiful part of any area and add value to property prices, but remember, light and views are not owned by anyone, so unless a tree is unsafe, or is causing damages to property, there is no legal reason to remove a neighbour’s tree.
Good luck and happy planting