May 18, 2012

Fast Growing Trees and Bushes to Provide Privacy

I got a response from the question prompt I have setup on this site that asks you what you would like to see me write about next. Someone out there wants to know which trees and/or bushes should be planted if you are wanting to create some garden privacy quickly. It's a great question. Here is my response:

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.


Bamboo 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.


plants that provide privacy
Shrubs are awesome for privacy because they are so dense. They can grow tall and don't require a lot of shade. Some specific shrubs you may want to consider:

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.


Vines are great if you have a chain link fence or wooden wall you'd like to hide or disguise. I have grapevines growing against my back wooden fence. Honestly, it's my favorite thing about my yard. Without the grapevines though, the creakity old fence would make my yard look like a Ghost Town.

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.


Phil Goold is a retired landscaper of 30 years. He loves being outside more than anything else, except maybe pie. He enjoys connecting with other landscapers and gardeners because everyone brings something new and fun to the table. Connect with Phil on Twitter and Google+.

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