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    • Gazelle1985
    • By Gazelle1985 15th May 18, 9:48 AM
    • 78Posts
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    Gazelle1985
    Screening plants
    • #1
    • 15th May 18, 9:48 AM
    Screening plants 15th May 18 at 9:48 AM
    Hi,

    Can anyone recommend the best plants to use for screening? We’ve just bought a house, and the fence that we’re not responsible for is very low and doesn’t offer much privacy. I’d like some evergreen, fast growing, tall plants to put on our side of the fence to give us a bit of privacy – something like bamboo perhaps? What are the most cost effective options?

    Thank you
Page 1
    • andrewf75
    • By andrewf75 15th May 18, 11:22 AM
    • 8,164 Posts
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    andrewf75
    • #2
    • 15th May 18, 11:22 AM
    • #2
    • 15th May 18, 11:22 AM
    Depends what space you have and what you want it to look like.
    The most cost-effective is probably Leylandii but most people regret it as it gets huge and doesn't look very nice.
    Bamboo is good if you have a small garden and don't want to take up much space. Otherwise I'd look at Portuguese Laurel, Photinia, Cotoneaster maybe?
    • Farway
    • By Farway 15th May 18, 2:40 PM
    • 6,638 Posts
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    Farway
    • #3
    • 15th May 18, 2:40 PM
    • #3
    • 15th May 18, 2:40 PM
    Watch out for bamboo, some are real creeping thugs and will take over your garden, and next door's

    Be warned, do a lot of homework first and check out "root bags"

    You don't say how long this fence is, but a quick fix this year could be some tall annuals, like multi headed sunflowers

    Not instant but will give time for you to find an alternative for next year

    Maybe others can suggest more tall, easy, annuals

    Depending where the sun is, how about adding some extra height with trellis / mesh & growing climbers up? Could even be fruiting, like thornless blackberry, not evergreen, but who cares in mid winter?
    • Mee
    • By Mee 15th May 18, 2:55 PM
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    Mee
    • #4
    • 15th May 18, 2:55 PM
    This may be worth considering
    • #4
    • 15th May 18, 2:55 PM
    You may wish to consider (do watch the videos) QVC's fauz-leaf willow trellis
    Last edited by Mee; 15-05-2018 at 3:00 PM.
    Free thinker.
    • moneyistooshorttomention
    • By moneyistooshorttomention 15th May 18, 4:06 PM
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    moneyistooshorttomention
    • #5
    • 15th May 18, 4:06 PM
    • #5
    • 15th May 18, 4:06 PM
    One of the plants I've bought to achieve normal privacy levels in my garden is eleagnus.

    It grows fast and has the added bonus it will have edible berries at some point.

    But - it doesn't grow to "absolutely enormous" and I will be able to trim it (width and height wise) once it's got to the correct size I want for privacy purposes.
    Never doubt that a small group of people can change the world.

    It's the only thing that ever has.
    • Gazelle1985
    • By Gazelle1985 15th May 18, 4:41 PM
    • 78 Posts
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    Gazelle1985
    • #6
    • 15th May 18, 4:41 PM
    • #6
    • 15th May 18, 4:41 PM
    Thank you all, sone good ideaa to think about. Can any of those plants be grown in tubs? We have a patio running alongside the fence so might struggle to plant them.
    • Davesnave
    • By Davesnave 16th May 18, 7:01 AM
    • 26,620 Posts
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    Davesnave
    • #7
    • 16th May 18, 7:01 AM
    • #7
    • 16th May 18, 7:01 AM
    Thank you all, sone good ideaa to think about. Can any of those plants be grown in tubs? We have a patio running alongside the fence so might struggle to plant them.
    Originally posted by Gazelle1985
    I love it when posters drip-feed info like this!

    I would go for the faux willow then....Oh, hang on, where do you put the support posts?

    The truth is, you have a difficult situation which won't really be remedied without some serious graft, or spending inordinate amounts of money on planters, which will still be high maintenance.

    In the long run, part of the patio may have to go, when you can then plant/erect something permanent. Pyracantha is good in this sort of situation; not too wide, evergreen and tough as old boots.

    For now, maybe some tomatoes in grow-bags?
    A garden is never so good as it will be next year....
    • moneyistooshorttomention
    • By moneyistooshorttomention 16th May 18, 7:51 AM
    • 17,085 Posts
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    moneyistooshorttomention
    • #8
    • 16th May 18, 7:51 AM
    • #8
    • 16th May 18, 7:51 AM
    From what you now say - personally I'd be thinking either bamboo in large attractive containers or olive trees ditto (in large attractive containers).

    Neither of which options will be cheap ones - as large attractive containers cost (so bargain on anywhere between £20-ish for standard sorta size attractive containers, up to £100 for the really large kneeheight ones as the cheapest attractive containers around, up to £500 for a full choice of kneehigh containers). Gi-normous containers (ie waist height to bust height) could go up to around £1,000 each.

    Don't ask me how I know....ahem...though I've personally stopped at £100 each for kneehigh containers (ie the cheapest "real" ones basically).

    As for what plants can be grown in containers - it's more down to just how big they are in some respects. Given that one can buy bust height containers and those are big enough to plant pretty tall trees in. In your position - I'd be thinking knee-height to waist-height containers.

    EDIT; Of course - knee-height, waist-height and bust-height are based on my own height. I'm female and these days (darn it) short.
    Last edited by moneyistooshorttomention; 16-05-2018 at 7:57 AM.
    Never doubt that a small group of people can change the world.

    It's the only thing that ever has.
    • Gazelle1985
    • By Gazelle1985 16th May 18, 8:20 AM
    • 78 Posts
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    Gazelle1985
    • #9
    • 16th May 18, 8:20 AM
    • #9
    • 16th May 18, 8:20 AM
    Thanks very much - bamboo sounds like the way to go. Luckily we have lots of containers already, but is bamboo itself very expensive?
    • Davesnave
    • By Davesnave 16th May 18, 8:34 AM
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    Davesnave
    Bamboo is expensive if it's the right kind of bamboo, because that grows slowly and it take a lot of time to propagate saleable plants.
    You'd be best to go to a specialist nursery. e.g.
    https://www.bowdenhostas.com/categories/Bamboos/

    Bamboos of the size that fit in a pot are still fairly see-through.

    As for olives, I've had 3 of these in my tender care for as long as I can remember, and at 5' 4" I'm still taller than two of them!

    How deep a patio are we talking about here? Is there a possibility of planting beyond it and growing a plant sideways? You only get information that's relevant here if you are prepared to give enough yourself.
    Last edited by Davesnave; 16-05-2018 at 8:37 AM.
    A garden is never so good as it will be next year....
    • moneyistooshorttomention
    • By moneyistooshorttomention 16th May 18, 10:11 AM
    • 17,085 Posts
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    moneyistooshorttomention
    For bamboo - personally - I'd be thinking of pretty long rectangular pots and then plant a row of them in there as close to each other as you wish.

    There is the thing though with many plants - and bamboos are doubtless amongst them - that it's a toss-up between:

    - buying cheaper ones - but they're still "babies" or, at best, "toddlers" in size

    OR

    - buy an "adult" size one - and you will be charged extra accordingly.

    Depends somewhat on your circumstances personally - ie how old you are and how long you're planning on keeping current house.

    At my age (60's) and with the fact it looks as if I'll be having this house for rest of my life = it's worth my while to "spend big" and buy "adult" plants. I don't want to spend years at my age waiting for them to be the size I want, as the house has to "feel like Home asap" - so I "throw money at it" and buy bigger ones. Horses for courses on that one...
    Never doubt that a small group of people can change the world.

    It's the only thing that ever has.
    • Mojisola
    • By Mojisola 16th May 18, 10:19 AM
    • 30,034 Posts
    • 77,152 Thanks
    Mojisola
    Can anyone recommend the best plants to use for screening? We’ve just bought a house, and the fence that we’re not responsible for is very low and doesn’t offer much privacy.
    Originally posted by Gazelle1985
    How much would a higher fence cost compared to pots and plants?

    You could either offer to replace the short fence with a taller one or put up your own on your side of the existing fence. If you stagger the posts so that the new ones are in the middle of the existing panels, you'll only lose a few inches of ground.

    You could still use some plants in pots on the patio section or use smaller pots filled with concrete to support fence panels or trellis panels.
    • moneyistooshorttomention
    • By moneyistooshorttomention 16th May 18, 10:48 AM
    • 17,085 Posts
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    moneyistooshorttomention
    Hmmm....to that suggestion...but personally I'd be wondering if the neighbours might rip down their own fence and use the one OP put up instead as "the" fence between the properties and...there might be boundary problems. Also, most immediately the point, awkward little gaps attract weeds that one can't get at to remove them. I certainly really struggled to get at a bit of ivy that had started growing in between nfh and myself - and had visions of that growing all over the place right, left and centre (managed it - but it was literally impossible to pull it out and proved difficult to kill it).

    Plants would have the virtue of not being an obvious "boundary feature" iyswim - and OP could take them with them if they move subsequently and containers can be temporarily moved.
    Last edited by moneyistooshorttomention; 16-05-2018 at 10:51 AM.
    Never doubt that a small group of people can change the world.

    It's the only thing that ever has.
    • Mee
    • By Mee 3rd Jun 18, 3:45 PM
    • 1,133 Posts
    • 1,056 Thanks
    Mee
    Note a similar topic came up on Gardeners' Question Time, 3/6/2018
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0b493vk
    Free thinker.
    • Davesnave
    • By Davesnave 4th Jun 18, 8:37 AM
    • 26,620 Posts
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    Davesnave
    Note a similar topic came up on Gardeners' Question Time, 3/6/2018
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0b493vk
    Originally posted by Mee
    ...And they didn't come up with much, did they? Starts around 9 mins in.



    I'd still reiterate that pyracantha is a great screening plant, which can be trained to cover walls, fences etc, and unlike bamboo, it's wildlife friendly too.


    Expecting anything to screen effectively long-term if grown in a pot is a hiding to nothing IMO, and possibly an expensive one. Neither of my well-behaved bamboos has done well in a pot.



    And don't forget, big things in pots fall over!
    A garden is never so good as it will be next year....
    • Gazelle1985
    • By Gazelle1985 4th Jun 18, 8:47 AM
    • 78 Posts
    • 10 Thanks
    Gazelle1985
    Hello, thanks for all the suggestions.

    It's a very wide patio, so no chance of growing something sideways. Putting our own fence up is definitely a possibility which we're still considering, but as we've only recently moved in, we don't want to have the awkward conversation with the neighbours about blocking out their garden just yet. We also think that they might be adverse to a higher fence because their garden is very narrow and it may well block out all their sun. We think a few nice plants would be a bit friendlier.

    For now we have bought a 5ft ligustrum aureum and 1ft prunus and will just see how they do in very large tubs with lots of plant feed.
    • Davesnave
    • By Davesnave 4th Jun 18, 9:02 AM
    • 26,620 Posts
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    Davesnave
    Well, the ligustrum is pretty bomb-proof.


    I agree that suddenly shutting the neighbours out with your own tall fence wouldn't seem very friendly, so it's better to go for something that grows into place, but technically you're limited to 2m with boundary fences anyway.
    A garden is never so good as it will be next year....
    • Farway
    • By Farway 4th Jun 18, 2:05 PM
    • 6,638 Posts
    • 11,227 Thanks
    Farway
    ...And they didn't come up with much, did they? Starts around 9 mins in.
    Originally posted by Davesnave
    To be fair to GQT though, the questioner, like some posters, neglected to add important background detail to the question.

    In that instance they wanted to screen a 3 storey house
    • Grenage
    • By Grenage 4th Jun 18, 2:34 PM
    • 1,613 Posts
    • 1,535 Thanks
    Grenage
    If you can pull up a few patio slabs, you might have some joy planting directly. Container plants are a lot of work compared to those in open ground.
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