Question:

Dear Rabbonim,

First question:
Our garden contains two fruit producing trees which have been planted too close together (Less than a foot). One Large old one and another around 5 years old but small.
I wish to uproot the small one and move it a few feet to the side to allow it to have space to grow and fruit properly.
Please advise whether this is permitted? and how much earth should be moved with the roots to avoid having to recount oral?

Second question:
If a fruit tree is dead or dying (expert opinion) would it be permitted to cut it down to its stump and regrow; and if permitted would it be better if a non Jew did it?

Can you please recommend any sefer which easily outlines the practical halachos of gardening in Israel.

Thank you kindly

Answer:

1) You need to have enough earth around the roots during transportation that the tree can still survive with that amount of soil until it takes root in its new location. You should consult with an expert.

2)It is preferable to get a non Jew to cut the tree down, because there is also the aspect of “sakono” (danger) when cutting down a fruit tree.

A good book in Hebrew is משפטי ארץ by R. Shaul Richenberg.

Sources:

1) Bava Kama 92b, ibid Rosh, Tur CH:M 382, Shulchan Aruch CH:M 216:3 Ramo, Tzavo R. Yehudah Chosid 45, Rambam Malochim 6:8-9, Teshuvas Erech Shy Y:D 116, Tov Tam Vedas 3-2 Simon8, Avney Tzedek Y:D 45.

2) Mishnah Orloh 1:3, Y:D 294:19, ibid Pischey Teshuvah 13, Chazon Ish Orlah 2:10-12, Igros Moshe Y:D 1185, Minchas Shlomo 69,

 

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