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
2 ratings

Wednesday - September 10, 2008

From: Wynnewood, PA
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Trees
Title: Evergreen for privacy in Pennsylvania
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I would like to plant a tall, thin evergreen in my yard (the taller and thinner the better). Privacy is a goal, so we're looking for dense branches. The area gets full sun, and the soil in this area is rich in clay. A Norway Spruce previously grew in this spot. Thank you.

ANSWER:

Here are four possibilities.  Although they are all tall naturally, you might prefer a tree that is a bit smaller than these.  In that case there are various shorter cultivars of each and with various modified shapes.

Chamaecyparis thyoides (Atlantic white cedar) is a columnar tree, and although it can reach 75 feet, there are various cultivars that are shorter.  Prefers part shade.

Picea pungens (blue spruce) can grow to 100 feet, but again there are various smaller cultivars.  Prefers part shade.

Thuja occidentalis (arborvitae) grows 30 to 50 feet tall with various cultivars of shorter, slenderer forms.  Grows in sun, part shade, and shade.

Tsuga canadensis (eastern hemlock) can reach 100 feet, but shorter cultivars exist.  Prefers part shade or shade.


Chamaecyparis thyoides

Picea pungens

Thuja occidentalis

Tsuga canadensis

 

 

More Trees Questions

Pruning a Young Cercis canadensis (Redbud) Tree
April 05, 2014 - I have a redbud tree that was transplanted when very young (five years ago). It just started budding last year. It is growing very well but the branches are low. It's like it's growing out instead o...
view the full question and answer

Windbreak [Dustbreak] for Shelton, WA
May 31, 2013 - I live on a well traveled, dusty, gravel road in the Pacific North West and would like to plant a barrier to help control the dust.
view the full question and answer

Propagation of Mexican olive in Luling, TX
August 04, 2009 - Mr. Smarty Plants: we live in Luling, just south of Austin and have a 4 year old Mexican Olive tree; question: how do we propagate this 'hard to find' tree? Thank you so much.
view the full question and answer

Trees for creek side in Illinois
July 04, 2008 - I have a creek that runs along my back yard, and was wondering if you could give me some suggestions on water loving trees to grow next to it. The creek gets sun all day and is located in zone 5. (so...
view the full question and answer

Problems with post oaks in Milam Co., TX
October 26, 2009 - I have an old ranch in Milam County, Texas on the Brazos River with several large, old Post Oaks. Recently a few of these grand old trees have lost large branches and two have died. One has died, poss...
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
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center