Can we let a fallen tree in our yard rot in place without attracting termites?

Asked February 15, 2015, 12:10 PM EST

A tree just fell in our yard. As naturalists, we are inclined to let it rot in place. Our yard is adjacent to a wooded area with plenty of downed and rotting wood. However, people are telling us we will attract termites. This house had termites in the past and was treated. We have an annual inspection. We were told that the entire area, which is full of old houses (50 years plus), is full of termites. So will it really be an issue to leave this tree to rot?

Maryland trees and shrubs dead tree lrk attracting termites

1 Response

It is normal for termites to occur naturally in the soil and the most important preventive measures you can take to make your home inhospitable to termites are eliminating any direct contact between wood and soil and reducing moisture in and around the house. Please see our publication on termites and 'What You Can Do to Help Protect Your House'.

You did not mention where the tree was located in your yard. If the tree is located near your foundation or fairly close to the house it may be a good idea to have it removed.