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5 Trees to Grow For Home Privacy

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Trees serve many purposes in the backyard. Not only do they add aesthetic pleasure to the garden and increase the value of a property, they can be used as shading, and to block out noise from the streets. Trees can also be used to as a screen to create privacy between homes and create a natural retreat and solitude for residents, particularly those living in high density residential areas. So read on to discover the best trees to plant for some added home privacy.

What to consider

When selecting the type of tree to plant for added privacy, there are many considerations beyond the size of the tree.

One major consideration is growth rate. When you want to add some privacy to a yard, you don’t want to be waiting years for the plant to grow tall enough to block the neighbour’s view into the yard. Hardwoods tend to live longer, however they are slow growers. Typically, smaller, soft wood trees grow the fastest. It’s also important to consider whether the tree is deciduous or evergreen. If you want privacy all year round, evergreen trees retain their foliage all year around. But if you’d prefer to let the sun in during the colder months, deciduous trees change colour and lose their leaves in autumn and remain bare throughout winter.

Beyond its purpose as a privacy screen, you might want to also consider the climate of where you live, as this can impact on the tree’s lifespan and ability to grow. Some trees are more tolerant to urban conditions like atmospheric pollutants, compacted soil, and poor drainage, so if you are planting your trees in the city, this is an important consideration for you. Aesthetic considerations, like the exterior design of the home and garden, are also relevant to your choice of tree, so think about what colour leaves might go well in the garden.

Top privacy trees

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Once you’ve decided which factors will influence your choice of tree, it’s time to shop around. Here’s our pick of the best privacy trees and their features, to help your decide.

1. Hybrid Poplars

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This type of tree is one of the best choices for privacy as it’s easy to grow in a variety of different soils, and is one of the fastest growers. Developing at a rate of around 2.5 metres per year, it reaches its maturity at 12-15 metres and can grow up to 10 metres wide. It has an oval shape that provides great shade from the harsh summer sun and in winter, the leaves fall, allowing sunlight through to warm the home. The trees should be planted around 1.5 metres apart from each other as their foliage is dense and will fill up the space between trees. This tree is also great in areas with high rainfall and don’t require any fertilizers to help growth.

2. Leyland Cypress

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Because this tree grows in a neat, symmetrical shape, with thick foliage, it’s able to create a complete privacy wall to conceal the yard from neighbours. It grow a little slower than the Hybrid Poplars – 1.5 metres per year – but is still among the fastest growers. At maturity, it’ll reach 15-20 metres in height, and 2-3 metres in width. As an evergreen tree, it’ll maintain the privacy screen all year round, and is adaptable to a variety of different soils, even sandy or heavy clay gardens.

3. Willow Hybrid

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Another fast grower, the Willow Hybrid can grow in almost any climate, and is popular due to it’s disease resistant qualities. This type of tree is particularly good in swampy and wet areas, so if your yard is prone to flooding, this is a good pick for you. However, the Willow Hybrid will also grow well in dry areas, if watered twice a week. It grows around 2 metres per year, reaching around 10-15 metres in total if planted in a row or 20 metres if planted alone, and can reach a span of 10 metres wide. The Willow Hybrid works well as a privacy wall due to its upright branches covered in lush green leaves, but note that it’s a deciduous tree, so will lose its leaves in winter.

4. Callistemon (Bottlebrush)

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Bottlebrushes are a popular native Australian tree that can work well as a privacy screen. They are easily adaptable in cultivation and grow best in moist soil, in full or partial sun. This tree grows at a rapid rate and will vary in size depending on the variety, but generally will reach around four metres in height, with some growing up to 10 metres. The popularity of the bottlebrush is due to it not only being able to act as a privacy screen, but its vibrant red flowers that blossom over spring and summer, adding a splash of colour to the yard.

5. Prunus Cerasifera ‘Nigra’ (Black Cherry Plum)

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Another way to add colour to your privacy screen is through planting an ornamental fruit tree. The Black Cherry Plum tree grows in a teardrop shape and produces deep blackish-purple leaves and twigs, with beautiful pale pink flowers. It’s a deciduous tree, so you’re able to enjoy the warmth from the sun coming through during winter, as well as privacy and the beauty of the flowers during the warmer months. They are low maintenance plants, only requiring some pruning during summer.

Add some privacy to your yard

Trees are the perfect screens to use for some added privacy above the fence line. There are plenty of great screening trees to choose from, so be sure to do your research on what the best choice is for the climate and remember to access the soil quality in your yard.

Need tree advice? Get in contact today with the Treescience experts and find out how our arboricultural consulting services can help deliver the right solution for your project.

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