tall, narrow trees for privacy along fenceline

flowergardens2(9)July 28, 2013

I have a side yard 8 feet wide and now a monster 2-story spec house facing my yard is being built. It is only 10-12 feet from the fence line. My house is 8 feet from the fence. We have a lovely yard and want to avoid our neighbors peering down on us. Three years ago I mistakenly planted 3 Bradford Pears not knowing they were not great choices due to limb breakage. I have them professional pruned to avoid future problems. I would like to plant something narrow and tall for privacy to block more of the fence line. I do not have much room, so do not want anything too wide. I thought of Cypress or Bamboo but know those are not good choices. I could always wait and see what the builder plants on that side of the fence. What ideas can you think of. I love dogwoods. Are there tall, skinny dogwoods for this area? One of the open "spaces" along the fence I need to cover has about a 15 ft spread and other stretch of open fenceline is about 30 feet wide. The sun will set right into their house, so these trees will not block my light or shade my yard. Their windows will look right into my kitchen. Yikes.. so much for small yards & high prices. The builder paid $701 k for the teardown/lot. Thanks.

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
hoovb zone 9 sunset 23

Why do you think Cypress is not a good choice? The 'Swanes Golden' selection is much smaller than the species but still big enough to screen a two-story.

You don't have a lot of room; your choices are limited.

Syzygium paniculatum was once THE choice for tall, narrow hedges for California, but a pest devastated them for a few years, now an introduced control seems to have made Syzygium an alternative once again. Mine are doing well and have just a bit of damage now and then.

Bamboo can work, but it is very, very messy--constant litter--and requires either a root barrier or a clumping version.

Are the second story windows of the McMansion going to look down on your kitchen? An awning over your kitchen windows would give you privacy from them--would that be an acceptable alternative? My uphill neighbor's window looks into one of our bedroom windows--a window awning made that problem go away instantly.

Here is a link that might be useful: the story on Syzygium

    Bookmark   July 29, 2013 at 1:35AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
publickman

Perhaps when your neighbors move in, you will become best friends and invite them over for tea when they look into your kitchen. When I lived in Venice, I used to talk with my neighbors from my kitchen window, which overlooked their courtyard/patio. They were Loyola Marymount students and gave lots of parties and always invited us. Now I live in Westchester, and my neighbors don't speak with me, except one who will only wave or say hello. In Venice I knew the neighbors on both sides of me, and it was much nicer. The guys on the other side of my house had upper story windows and theoretically could have looked down into my yard, but they never did. I had a mango tree planted that blocked some of their view and also an acacia that I really would not recommend, as it grew too fast and was hard to get rid of. My roommate grew it from seeds he got at the arboretum, I think. The kitchen neighbors' landlady had bamboo planted to block the view between us, and I thought it was a pretty good solution, since the bamboo was contained by concrete on both sides of our wall. They had a tangerine tree that they shared with us, and I had a fig tree that I shared with them. I had two fig trees, and so I shared figs with a lot of people. I started locking my back yard after someone was caught stealing mangos from my yard. He was an underage surfer, according to my neighbor who caught him.

BTW, the neighbor's landlady was a Brazilian chanteuse and would sing Brazilian love hits while she was working outside - it was very delightful to listen to. She also sang at some of the Brazilian restaurants in Culver City/Palms.

Lars

    Bookmark   July 29, 2013 at 7:41PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
calistoga_al

I am fond of my Rhus integrifolia a native which grows to 20 to 30 feet here with no water. It is evergreen and dense and requires very little trimming to maintain the shape. It drops a minimum of leaves and berries. Al

    Bookmark   July 30, 2013 at 9:31AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
molewacker z9b Napa CA (No.SFBay)(9b Danville E(SF)Bay CA)

Citrus or Red Tipped Photinias. Citrus requires some TLC, especially until they get established and some varieties grow faster than others. RTP's are low maintenance, grow tall quickly and can tolerate a variety of soil / wet / dry conditions.

Stay away from large trees and especially conifers i.e. redwoods. The roots will find your pipes, concrete, and your wallet. And the tall wall effect will make it claustrophobic.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2013 at 5:49PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
kittymoonbeam

I love my feathery clumping bamboo but as hoovb has said, it's messy and needs some pruning. But I love to use the bamboo for projects so I'm happy to cut it. If I ever have to work around the area, I can cut it down to the ground and it will grow right back unlike a tree or a hedge.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2013 at 9:18PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
elsch

I like Italian Buckthorn- Rhamnus alatarnus 'John Edwards' so far.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2013 at 12:47AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenwitch(Sz19 SoCal)

I planted Tecate Cypress, they grow about 6' - 7' a year and then top out (in a garden setting) to 15' and then grow slowly, have beautiful bark, have a lovely fragrance, are native to California and are very drought & heat tolerant once established. The situation is similar, a two story with windows with a view into my kitchen & bathroom windows and small yard & patio. I intend to prune them to show the trunks and keep the lower branches compact to give me the most room in my yard.

Here is a link that might be useful: Tecate Cypress

    Bookmark   August 11, 2013 at 5:58PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
bahia(SF Bay Area)

Some narrow growing trees I'd recommend would include Tristania laurina, Hymenosporum flavum, Agonis flexuosa 'After Dark', Chamaedorea plumosa as a multi-trunk specimen, or Otatea acuminata aztectorum. Shrubs might include Pittosporum tenuifolium Marjorie Channon or Grewia occidentalis trained as a hedge.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2013 at 4:13PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
bahia(SF Bay Area)

Some narrow growing trees I'd recommend would include Tristania laurina, Hymenosporum flavum, Agonis flexuosa 'After Dark', Chamaedorea plumosa as a multi-trunk specimen, or Otatea acuminata aztectorum. Shrubs might include Pittosporum tenuifolium Marjorie Channon or Grewia occidentalis trained as a hedge.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2013 at 4:14PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Please Help: Sheet Mulching leads to Bermuda Grass Nightmare!
Ok so we decided to lose our lawn "The Bay Friendly...
ktgrandy
Need help with identification
I have tiny black round specks all over my fence and...
Nancy Taylor
Avocado: Sharwil!
Folks, I've been looking for a source for a Sharwil...
NorCalNiko
Is there an "easy" red Kangaroo paw???
I planted 2 "Big Red" KP about a month ago....
Sabine Halfhill
Mother Nature Fooled the beans, Now Hurry Hummingbird it's up to you
Well the beans have come out of their husky winter...
Wild Haired Mavens
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™