February 2019

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One of the wonderful things about having a large tree on your property is all the fun you can have!  Tree climbing, treehouses, and, of course, tree swings. To protect the integrity of your tree it’s a good idea to properly install a tree swing.  

There are several things to consider when deciding where to hang your swing:

  1. Tree type.  Oaks are the prefered tree because of their strength.  Don’t hang your swing on evergreens, fruit trees, or any other tree that is prone to splitting easily.
  2. Branch size.  A large branch is key, and should be at least 8 inches around and no more than 20 feet from the ground.
  3. Branch condition.  Choosing a healthy branch is important for your safety.  Examine the branch from top to bottom for any signs of disease, distress, or infestation, and do not hang your swing on a dead tree branch!
  4. The branch should be large enough that the swing can hang from the tree at least three feet away without the branch bouncing.

To attach the swing, you’ll need an eye bolt and some rope.  There are several different types of rope you can use for your swing, such as polyester rope, nylon rope, polypropylene rope, natural rope fiber, or a metal chain.  

Safety is very important in the installation and enjoyment of your rope swing.  Make sure to:

  • Replace the rope every few years.
  • Check the integrity of the branch to make sure it’s still stable.
  • Replace the eye bolt if the tree grows over it.
  • Use ropes and bolts that are approved for the maximum amount of weight.
  • Check the knots on the rope to prevent unraveling.

Tree swings can greatly increase the enjoyment of your trees for years to come.