Advice on evergreen privacy screen

Asked April 3, 2018, 6:27 PM EDT

The lot next door has just sold and the owner will be building his house overlooking our house about 100’ away. About 75’ from our house, straddling the property line, are mostly deciduous trees with a few mature loblolly pines. I don’t know how many he’s going to take out. So I have a large space where I can plant trees however the existing trees are on the east side of where I would plant a privacy screen; they won’t get sun until the afternoon. We are 70, so we can’t waIt years for something to grow. What would be your recommendation? My husband likes Leland Cypress. I like Thuja Green Giant. I think you like the Eastern Red Cedar. Thank you

Talbot County Maryland

1 Response

In general some of the faster growing trees tend to be weak wooded and harder to take care of later on. Also, plants growing in the shade will be slower growing and there will be a lot of root competition from the existing trees for moisture and nutrients. You have to consider the mature height and width of the plants and match to the site. You did not mention if you have an issue with deer.

It is difficult to recommend leyland cypress. This tree can grow to 60 feet and is borderline hardy in our area. When subject to drought, poor soils, poor planting techniques they are very susceptible to canker diseases and bagworms.

Some possibilities may be upright hollies and or arborvitaes. It is a good idea to plan for a mix of different plant species so you do not lose the whole stand to an insect or disease issue.

At this point, you may want to contact some landscape designers for a site visit and recommendations. Also, contact some large nurseries as they may have landscape designers on staff. You can take a copy of a plat, plan, or take some photos with you. They should be able to advise you with specific varieties and/or plants to fit your landscape.
Take a look at the publication from Clemson on mixed screens and designs. The plants on the list may not be applicable to your area or site.