En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
1 rating

Wednesday - October 24, 2007

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Privacy Screening
Title: Native trees for privacy screen in Central Texas
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I live in the hill country outside of Austin,TX in somewhat rocky terrain. I wanted to plant a tree for a privacy screen to hide a neighbor's house. I was considering a Leland cypress. What are your thoughts? I am looking for a tree that is full at the top and bottom grows tall (juniper size), and is low maintenance. It will get partial sun. Also any other trees you may suggest? Thanks.

ANSWER:

The Leyland cypress (Cupressocyparis leylandii or Cupressus leylandii) is a cultivated hybrid of Monterey cypress (Cupressus macrocarpa) and Alaska Cedar (Cupressus nootkatensis) and, as such, is not really considered a plant native to North America. Since our focus and expertise here at the Lady Bird Johnson are plants native to North America, we wouldn't recommend planting the Leyland cypress. Certainly the native range of its two progenitors doesn't include Central Texas and there are problems concerning hot summers making them prone to diseases.

Since you are looking for a privacy screen, you probably are interested in an evergreen. Here are a few suggestions with Central Texas as the native range:

Juniperus virginiana (eastern redcedar), 30-40 feet, but can reach 90 feet

Sophora secundiflora (Texas mountain-laurel), 10-20 feet, can reach 30 feet

Ilex vomitoria (yaupon), 12-25 feet, can reach 36 feet

You can also visit the Texas Tree Planting Guide from the Texas Forest Service and Texas A&M University to search for trees using your own criteria.


Juniperus virginiana

Sophora secundiflora

Ilex vomitoria

 


 

More Privacy Screening Questions

Evergreens to replace a screening line of pine trees
December 02, 2008 - Dear Mr. Smartyplants, I lost a "screening" line of pines along my back property line to powerline trimmers & a blight. The area is quite damp & the soil full of clay which is now acidic from the...
view the full question and answer

Need suggestions for cold resistant, hardy hedge plant in Jonathan, NC.
June 28, 2011 - I'm looking for a Full sun, cold resistant, hardy, non-invasive plant to be used for a property line hedge for North Carolina. Preferably NOT slow growing. What can you suggest?
view the full question and answer

Year-round privacy screen of evergreen plants.
November 02, 2010 - We need a year-round privacy screen of evergreen plants.
view the full question and answer

Looking for a Privacy Barrier Plant for NC
August 21, 2014 - I am trying to determine the best plant for a privacy barrier for my area in NC that has clay soil. I have a 6 foot high fence but need something 12 feet or taller. It has to be something that does no...
view the full question and answer

Need plant suggestions for a 700' long privacy screen in Wimberley, TX.
May 27, 2011 - I live in Wimberley. Tx Dot has ruined 700' of my side yard's (& back yard's) privacy by clearing all the plants/trees that had grown up in their right of way adjacent to our property. They're als...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center