A fence is the most popular option among homeowners who are seeking to boost the level of privacy in their homes. Steel, concrete, and wood are usually their material of choice.
However, the right types of plants — when grown, shaped, and maintained properly — also make for great natural screeners in any property. Although they may require constant work on your part, if you’re looking for a more natural feature in your home that can enhance privacy, provide security, and even act as effective wind breaks, opt for tall-growing plants.
Below are some of the most recommended types of plants that work best as tall hedges and natural screening features for your home:
- Box. Different species of Buxus are traditional favourites for hedging. They are also a popular option if you are looking to build formal hedges. Japanese box is the best variety to plant and grow since it can provide long-lasting screening.
- Murrayas have a somewhat similar texture to boxes but they have lighter green leaves. They grow fast and are easy to care for. They bloom with fragrant orange flowers during spring and summer. Unfortunately, murrayas are best suited for warm, frost-free areas only. If you choose this type of plant, opt for modern cultivars that are unlikely to set seed because some murrayas can create weed problems.
- Lilly pillies. This type of plant is ideal as tall hedges and screeners since they naturally have dense screens and are fast-growing. Lilly pillies can grow up to eight metres tall; however, they should be pruned regularly to have thicker foliage. They have numerous varieties but the best ones to grow are the Syzygium smithii, Acmena smithii, and Syzygium leuhmannii. The last two cultivars are relatively free of the disfiguring pimple psyllid that pock marks the growing plants.
- Photinias are reliable performers as hedges and screeners. This plant has both large and small leaf varieties, with the latter one perfect for small hedges. Photinias have an overall deep green leaf appearance but the new growth comes as striking red foliage, providing an amazing colour contrast that brightens up properties. To get the shape you want for the hedge and to get those attractive red new leaves, you have to trim this plant regularly.
- Japonica and sasanqua are the most popular varieties of camellia. However, sasanqua is the preferred type for hedging since it grows faster, grows well under sun or shade, can cope with tolerable cold conditions, and have smaller leaves. In autumn, their flowers bloom; the colours range from white, pink to red, depending on the variety you planted.
You don’t need to have artificial fences built around your home to boost privacy. If you’re not looking for a quick solution and are willing to put in some work, opt for hedges and natural screeners.