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

Friday - May 01, 2009

From: Volente, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Privacy Screening
Title: Evergreen tree for privacy screen
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I live out in the hill country in Volente, TX. I'm looking for a fast growing, native evergreen tree variety that would make a good privacy screen. I don't want a hedge, but I do want to replace a bunch of Cedar trees that providing a screen now. Any suggestions?

ANSWER:

For an evergreen native tree that acts as a privacy screen, Mr. Smarty Plants doesn't think you could do much better than Juniperus ashei (Ashe's juniper).   You can prune and trim them to any shape you want if they have gotten too large.  If you have male trees that are producing lots of pollen, then remove those and leave the female trees with their berries for the birds.  But, you may just not like our native juniper and that is why you are removing them.  Fair enough—there are other choices!  You didn't say exactly how tall of a tree you wanted, but here are some suggestions and their maximum heights:

Ilex vomitoria (yaupon) 12-25 feet.

Rhus virens (evergreen sumac) 8-12 feet.

Leucophyllum frutescens (Texas barometer bush) up to 8 feet.

Morella cerifera (wax myrtle) 6-12 feet, generally, but can reach 20 feet.

Prunus caroliniana (Carolina laurelcherry) 15-20 feet and here are more photos.

Sophora secundiflora (Texas mountain-laurel) up to 30 feet.

There are always the live oaks, Quercus fusiformis (plateau oak) at 20-40 feet or a different juniper, Juniperus virginiana (eastern redcedar) at 30-40 feet, usually, but can reach 90 feet.


Juniperus ashei

Ilex vomitoria

Rhus virens

Leucophyllum frutescens

Morella cerifera

Prunus caroliniana

Sophora secundiflora

Quercus fusiformis

Juniperus virginiana

 

 

 

 

 

More Privacy Screening Questions

Drought-tolerant shrub for privacy screen
November 23, 2007 - Is there some kind of drought resistant bush or thorny plant we can rim our property with to stop all the foot traffic through our yard? We don't care if it's pretty, just something thick and/or th...
view the full question and answer

Shade tolerant evergreens for privacy shield in Louisville KY
March 10, 2014 - Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, Our property is adjacent to the highway for ~ 200ft. I'm looking for partial-to-full shade tolerant evergreens that will grow to be relatively tall. Our soil is clay and g...
view the full question and answer

Need suggestions for privacy hedge in New River, AZ.
June 05, 2012 - Hi! I live on a acre that is fenced and cross-fenced with 6' chain link. I am desperate to find a drought tolerant, very low water, non-toxic, fast growing privacy hedge or vine that I can plant arou...
view the full question and answer

Replacing Drought-Stricken Cedars
January 16, 2012 - Hello, I live in Williamson County on a couple acres. We have several dead cedars as a result of drought; we're reluctant to cut them down because many of them provide a friendly barrier between us...
view the full question and answer

Plants for a windbreak on a slope in OH
April 20, 2011 - Have property at the top of a valley with a steep drop off. Would like to know native to NE Ohio ground covers, grasses perennials, and not too tall trees for windbreak that will prevent erosion. The ...
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