Welcome to this post about why you might not want to be growing eucalyptus at home. There are a sea of arguments against growing it in all honesty. In this article, we will discuss some of the most popular that include the impact it has on the soil it is growing in. Making it sour and inhabitable for other plants.
Another reason might be the area the roots can cover, about 100 feet has been shown on some of the oldest examples of eucalyptus. However, do these arguments against it outweigh the benefits that might exist with it? Continue reading to find out.
If you want to read a complete and comprehensive guide to growing eucalyptus then who has written right here on the site? You can find it right here, How To Grow A Eucalyptus Tree.
Why You Should Not Plant Eucalyptus
The biggest argument against growing any tree of eucalyptus is the pollution it can have on the soil around it. It makes the soil and ground uninhabitable for other plants because of the lower pH it brings. This is a process that happens because of the leaves that it shed. These leaves then become compost as they deteriorate. It releases chemicals that are not very healthy for the soil.
With this said, there are still a lot of people that choose to grow eucalyptus at home for the beauty they hold and also the incredible smell the leaves have. Knowing what the arguments against growing it are is a very important part as well however and one that you should be aware of.
Some of the other factors why it might not be such a good idea to grow it is that it often outcompetes other plants growing nearby. It makes it very difficult for them to get any nutrition or oxygen from the soil. The reason for this is the vast root system the tree is able to develop. There have been reports of some really old trees having root systems accounting for almost 100 feet in width. Makes you think if it’s a good idea to have it growing at home in your garden.
Eucalyptus is a very easy tree to grow, but how easy is it really? In this article, we dive deeper into that topic. Find it here, Is Eucalyptus Hard To Grow?
Are Eucalyptus Trees Bad
The simple answer to whether eucalyptus trees are bad is that it’s complicated. Might seem like a bad answer but there are of course downsides to it, just like there are pros to it. For us, the positives outweigh the negatives. But for a lot of people that’s not the case. One of the most important things about growing it however is doing it in moderation. It will have a very bad effect on your garden if you have let’s say 5 or more growing. Stick to having one and let it be that way. Less is more.
The reason for us suggesting you not have more is that it does outcompete a lot of other plants growing at home. Some other factors that might be a bad tree to be having at home are the fact it lowers the pH. Most plants want a pH of around 7, which would be referred to as neutral. But with eucalyptus present, this number can be lower. Just one point lower and you can see a huge impact on your other things growing.
With this lower pH comes a more favorable environment for mushrooms to grow in. Mushrooms are generally water-repellant. This causes other plants in the area to have a hard time catching or taking advantage of water lying and sitting in the soil. Often this causes the most damage to older trees that survive on water found deep beneath the surface. When the mycelium at the top soil repels the water, the lower water storages don’t get resupplied. Causing the trees to have a hard time surviving.
Growing eucalyptus from seed is a project we recommend to most people that want to see quick progress. Here you will find out a guide to growing it from seed, How To Grow Eucalyptus From Seed.
Is Eucalyptus An Invasive Tree
Yes, eucalyptus is an invasive species. It was usually grown throughout California to some extent. Originally it comes from Australia where it was accustomed to the very harsh and dry climate there. Coming to California I found a perfect home where the very warm climate mixed with more rain made it a match made in heaven.
After it had grown there for many many decades it finally escaped and started growing along the coastline. This was outside the norm and this is when we can really see the impact it has on new land. It takes off the soil and forces other plants out. As the plants that normally grow there seem to exist, it affects the wildlife in that they no longer have their habitat left as they want it.
Let’s reiterate again what we have been talking about here. There are many reasons not to grow eucalyptus. Some of the most popular and strong arguments against it are that it lowers the pH of the soil and makes it habitable for other plants growing nearby. This along with very large root systems makes it hard to grow at home in the garden.
What is the impact of growing eucalyptus on the soil? In this article here we will discuss just that. Find it here, Is Eucalyptus Bad For Soil?