Why Plants Make Nice Barriers
Plants and bushes make for great yard barriers for two big reasons: 1) They can hide an ugly yard belonging to a neighbor and 2) they provide privacy which is nice if you want to tend your garden in your underwear.
You work so hard to make your yard look pretty, so why let an ugly yard on the other side of the fence bring your yard down? Planting barriers is a great way to control the feeling your yard and garden conveys.
Peeping Toms are never fun, either. If you have a pool or want to relax in the yard, it can be a little awkward if someone can see you from their kitchen window. Enclosing your yard with plants is a beautiful way to get some privacy.
So what Plants Will Give me Privacy, and Fast??I did the research, anonymous questioner, so you didn't have too. Combined with some forum discussions, Wikipedia reading, and personal experience, I give you a handful of plants that provide quick privacy.
BambooBamboo is great, especially if you're landscaping in beach communities (i.e. Florida, Southern Texas, California) because it grows fast, tall, and like crazy.
There are two types of bamboo: Running and Clumping. For barriers and privacy, running bamboo works better than clumping. However, you will find that people don't like running bamboo because it is "invasive." Don't let this scare you. It does like to spread, but if that's a huge problem, you can use Rhizome Barrier to keep it contained.
I have Oleanders growing along the side of my house and they do a great job at blocking off the outside world. Plus, they have beautiful pink flowers.
Euonymus is also a fast growing vine that is sure to provide you with lots of privacy if grown on something like a chain-link fence.
All images are my own.