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edible screen

Posted by catlady4444 7A (My Page) on
Fri, Aug 10, 07 at 16:27

I need a screen to block my neighbor's driveway---about 50' or so. It's a part sun/part shade location. I was settled on serviceberry, until I saw, and now I'm completely overwhelmed. I need something that'll do well without a lot of trouble (I don't want anything I'd have to spray.) I'd prefer something pretty---I saw suggestions for hedges like blueberries in other postings which don't sound attractive to me. I guess I'd prefer small trees/large shrubs. Does anyone have personal experience with any of the array of plants that are available?
Thanks in advance,

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: edible screen

Blueberries! A good friend told me to plant them and she was so right.

I am not an expert and am just getting started with them myself, but I have watched them now for a year and a half and find the wonderful!

Each season they are beautiful! Especially in the fall. Here in California (I am near the coast) my blueberries turn such lovely colors.

They've been easy to divide and apparently are easy to propagate from cuttings as well (haven't tried that yet, but learned this on a gardening show.)

I just started to get berries this past summer. I've learned since that I should have taken off the flowers so that the fruit didn't set, then I would have encouraged stronger plants and better fruit next year.

But anyway, from this beginner gardener, I'd recommend blueberries. Good luck! Kate

RE: edible screen

I have a 8 foot tall screen of blueberries at maybe 45 feet long. They're quite old now and no matter how many people I invite over I still can't quite harvest even half of them. I stop after the first five gallons or so. They do smell awesome when in bloom. They do however grow out from the base at an angle so they are often less than a complete screen down low. I am considering lowbush beneath my highbush.

RE: edible screen

What kind of screen are you looking for? Dense with no view of the neighbor, or light, where the view is obscured but not completely blocked? You mentioned you had a 50' long area to plant, but how how wide it was going to be or could be? A 50' row of any thing is going to potentially produce a lot of fruit? Do you want to process it all? Depending on the area available you could plant several layers of different kinds plants to give you more variety and longer harvest. Some trees, interspersed with shrubs and low growers could give you a very dense screen. Where are you located? That will determine what will work in your area. I've included a link to a page that rates fruit from easiest to hardest to grow. I don't agree with every rating, but in general it's a good guide. You could also consider a trellis and place vines as a screen -- some like kiwi (or hardy kiwi) grow very densely. You could try several different things and see how they do for you.

Keeping only to shrubs:
Often, Juneberry/Serviceberry does not grow very densely, and it's leaves are subject to similar attacks as are apple trees.

Blueberries - delicious and no-spray. You have to give special attention to the soil at planting. Depending on variety and source, not always dense growing.

Nanking cherry - Makes a small, tart cherry fruit. Good tasting, but too tedious to process the pits out for cooking. Unlike most other Prunus species (peach, plum, etc, it does not require spraying. Dense growth.

Cornelian Cherry - this is actually a dogwood - Cornus mas - I have not tasted the fruit as yet. Described as a cranberry with a pit. Large bush/small tree (to 20') Blooms are yellow - not fantastically showy, but flower very early so often the only show around. Rather dense growth.

Good luck! Let us know what you decide and how it goes.

Here is a link that might be useful: Fruits for Home Gardeners

RE: edible screen

Last part:

If you did decide to have a wider area, you could plant
4 to 5 Pawpaws, with Nanking Cherry/or/Cornelian cherry/or/Juneberry between them with blueberries in front of them all. For a groundcover in front of them you could plant strawberries or alpine strawberries. Some of this depends on how shady this area is an what direction the sun comes from

Happily spending your money!!! :-)

RE: edible screen

You may want to consider elderberries. They're tall, they're bushy, they take care of themselves, and they have fairly attractive white flowers in addition to the fruits.

I'm disappointed with the appearance of my serviceberry hedge, as well. They're rather spindly and the leaves tend to get blotchy...

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