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10 DIY Treehouse Ideas and Tips

The platform of your treehouse is the most critical component.Ryan Lawn & Tree partners with our customers to create beautiful lawns and landscapes that are healthy, lush, and vibrant. We want each of our customers to truly enjoy their lawns, knowing their yards are main gathering places for their families, friends, and neighbors.

In an earlier post, we took a look at some cool tree swing designs that people are using to enjoy their yards even more than normal. In this post, we’ll take a look at some awesome treehouse ideas and tips that will help you build a treehouse that will transform any yard into a great play place for kids and adults alike.

Here are some DIY treehouse tips and ideas that will help make your DIY treehouse project go smoothly:

  1. If you want to utilize your own treehouse design, we recommend making a 3D, to-scale cardboard model that will give you a chance to see if your design is what you want. It will also allow you to get others’ opinions on your overall design.
  2. Once you have decided on a design, calculate how heavy you anticipate the treehouse to be. Project the square footage of wood that will be used, as well as the type of wood used. Online sources can be used to determine the weight per unit of the wood type selected.
  3. Once you know the approximate weight, it’s time to build the platform. Platform construction is critical, as it will bear the weight of the house itself, as well as all the contents and potential occupants in the house at one time. Utilize plenty of lumber in the construction of the platform, using the highest quality anchors, bolts, and hardware to make sure your platform will last.
  4. If the tree you are building in is a mature tree and your platform rests in the bottom one-eighth of the tree, a fixed platform is sufficient. If you want to go higher, you may need to use fixed cables or other restraining hardware to ensure the treehouse is sound.
  5. Don’t let height fool you; you can build a really cool treehouse as low as 7 feet off the ground. Generally, the lower the house, the easier the overall construction project will be – as you have less height to transport wood and supplies across.
  6. Think carefully over the wood type(s) you use in your design. Many wood types will work. Our own personal favorite is green oak. This wood is hard enough to withstand years of use, but it does require that holes be pre-drilled, as the wood is so hard that it is difficult to drive nails into it.
  7. Do as much work on the ground as possible. Treehouse construction rookies tend to think they have to do much of the actual construction of the treehouse in the tree – on the platform, or within the emerging house. Treehouse pros know that you can build it on the ground better – and haul it up to the treehouse for finishing.
  8. For safety purposes, it is best to get the four walls up as soon as possible. This provides a sense of security for those working in the house – particularly if it’s at a significant height above the ground.
  9. Make sure you build your treehouse with the long view in mind. Leave a gap between the base and frame of the house and the tree itself to account for tree growth. If you don’t, the treehouse will eventually succumb to the growth of the tree – leaving you treehouse homeless!
  10. Once the house is built, schedule monthly maintenance tasks to keep the treehouse safe and secure. The treehouse will be open to the forces of nature – a monthly check helps you keep ahead of any problems that may arise.

Bright paint colors, like this sky blue, will give your treehouse personality.The staff at Ryan Lawn & Tree love to see people outdoors enjoying their yards – whether they are enjoying their new treehouse or are swinging on their new awesome tree swings. It’s one reason why we work so hard to keep our customers’ lawns, landscapes, and trees healthy, lush, and beautiful.

We’d love to talk to you more about your yard – or about your treehouse ideas. Do you have any that we didn’t mention here? Please share with us so we can include them in a future blog post!

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