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What to grow for privacy?

(8 Posts)
SafariSoGood Tue 17-Jan-17 14:53:30

We have a long narrow(ish) sloping garden.
Original wall on one side, sloping fence on the opposite with very tall trees at bottom.

We need privacy! The fence is quite low due to next doors tree which has since been cut right back.

I would like to have borders running along each side and leave the rest as lawn for the DC.

What can I plant which will grow tall enough to give us privacy on either side?

Topping the fence with trellis and growing ivy has been recommended but I wanted more of a hedge <clueless>

Any suggestions really appreciated!

HaveYouSeenHerLately Tue 17-Jan-17 16:37:42

How tall is the fence currently? The trouble with hedge in a narrow garden is that it will grow out as well as up. Worth considering especially if you plan to have them on both sides. Difficult to grow pretty borders beneath as they steal all the light/ moisture/ nutrients.

My garden sounds similar (narrow, long lawn with borders either side, big beech tree at the end in neighbouring house) and I've gone with trellis on top of the fence plus climbers. I've planted structural shrubs in front for interest and there's still plenty of space for smaller plants.

I'd highly recommend a mixture of evergreen climbers. They guarantee privacy year-round grin

notarehearsal Tue 17-Jan-17 17:10:18

What about laurels? They can be kept in check with pruning

SafariSoGood Wed 18-Jan-17 16:01:44

Thanks for your replies!

Haveyou - The wall is about 6ft near the house and then about 5ft going down in stages IYSWIM? We have some inherited fruit trees and a huge shrub thing <have t a clue> along the wall.

The fence is about 5ft high sloping down. But due to a hump is as low as 3feet in parts.

I love the idea of evergreen climbers - can you recommend any that are fast growing?

nota - We planted laurels in the front garden and I love them!

I asked DH to plant some in the back, which he did but they have not taken confused

He doesn't have a problem with the low fence hmm so isn't bothered. I am taking on the garden now so I can use it happily rather than feeling spied on grin

HaveYouSeenHerLately Wed 18-Jan-17 18:54:39

You're welcome!

I had similar when I moved in. The slope was possibly less severe than yours by the sound of it but it did make the 5.5ft fence (5ft on 6" gravelboards) appear 4.5ft in places. I evened it up everywhere by adding 1ft trellis on batons. Actually a couple of panels have 18" trellis and it doesn't look out of place.

I believe the general rule is 2m max. fence height in rear gardens which includes trellis. If you go higher there's a risk someone might complain and you'd be forced to remove it. The climbers add another 6-12" along the top wink

I do have some hedge in the garden, I forgot to mention! It was there when I moved in. I like it as a feature for wildlife and it grows alongside a massive tree where fencing would be awkward to install. The border against it is in shade pretty much the whole day so I don't grow a whole lot under there. I call it the woodland (it's about 12ft long if that) grin

Laurels of course flowers The laurel on my bottom fence is very established (planted by previous owner). I've removed the lower branches and thinned and pruned it to create a pleached form. I don't think there's a law against the height of pleached hedges and it's providing a nice bit of screening between me and the back neighbours. I've sacrificed a bit of light but not as much as I feared. It's taken a while to improve the surrounding dry soil but I now have a really productive flowerbed beneath.

HaveYouSeenHerLately Wed 18-Jan-17 18:56:58

Re. Evergreen climbers, I'll be back to comment as I'm about to make dinner!

Whereabouts are you in the UK and what direction does your garden face?

SafariSoGood Wed 18-Jan-17 21:35:47

I like the sound of your woodland grin

I don't think height (on the fence side) will be an issue as the house is rented to young people. They use the garden for BBQs and smoking weed classy

That's the side I really want to add height to. I'm in the SW with a south facing garden. The fence side is in sun for most of the day.

When we moved in, the previous neighbours didn't use the garden, but this lot are out there ALL THE BLOODY TIME smoking etc.

HaveYouSeenHerLately Thu 19-Jan-17 13:46:24

I feel your pain grin

I think the challenge is finding climbers that are relatively fast growing but have year round interest and aren't too unmanageable (like Virginia creeper).

I have a selection of pyracantha (red/orange/yellow berries), golden and variegated ivy (less dingy than the plain green stuff), ceonothus (LOVE the blue flowers), winter flowering clematis 'Freckles', star jasmine, evergreen honeysuckle, passionflower and buddleia. I thought the last two would lose their leaves over winter but they've kept them surprisingly. The winter hasn't been too harsh but we've had a few frosts in the SE.

I'd try and get the biggest specimens you can afford to get off to a flying start. The buddleia, ivy and ceonothus grew the fastest in my case. The pyracantha are now looking good but took a while to establish. I neglected to prune them in to the fence to encourage new growth oops. Now rectified wink

I attached reed screening to the new trellis while the plants established.

I also have a selection of spring/summer clematis, summer climbing annuals (e.g. sweet peas), climbing roses and so on to add a bit of interest throughout the year. I'm learning to layer my climbers grin

If you have a lot of area to cover you could repeat climbers two or three times. For some reason when I started out I only bought one of each plant. I've since taken cuttings and have duplicates going on which is quite pleasant as you gaze down the garden.

I'd quite like to add a solanum and climbing hydrangea this year.

In front I have lots of medium sized shrubs and trees like acer, fatsia japonica, red robin, rhododendron, azalea, camellia (last 3 like ericaceous soil and feed) and smaller plants (perennials, annuals) for ground cover.

I don't know much about establishing hedges but hopefully someone else can advise smile

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