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
Not Yet Rated

Thursday - March 11, 2010

From: Irvington , NY
Region: Northeast
Topic: Privacy Screening
Title: New York State Shrubs to Screen Home from Traffic
Answered by: Janice Kvale

QUESTION:

I am looking for a native New York bush/small tree which I can use along a road to screen my home from year-round car traffic. The area is not terribly wide and the soil is OK. I am willing to prune and fertilize.

ANSWER:

If you are searching for a year-round screen, Mr. Smarty Plants assumes that you will want an evergreen shrub, but you may find a deciduous solution more to your liking. I have several proposals that you may entertain but you may also want to do a bit of searching through our Plant Database yourself as you know the specifics of moisture and light exposure for your site. Here is how you do that: Go to our Plant Database Combination Search. Enter your location (New York), either shrub or tree (I used only shrub but you can see what comes up under tree also), and perennial. Then indicate the amount of sunlight your site receives daily and the moisture content of the soil. Voila! A list of options appears on your computer screen.

After you have made your selection(s), find a supplier from our list in your area.

All of the suggestions below are native to New York State. Some indicate that they grow to a large size so your willingness to prune may be essential in keeping them the size you prefer. Many of the plants are those that adapt well as hedges. All of the native shrubs in this first list are evergreen.To review specific descriptions of these shrubs, click on the name.

Ilex opaca (American holly)

Cephalanthus occidentalis (common buttonbush)

Thuja occidentalis (arborvitae)

Juniperus virginiana (eastern redcedar)

Tsuga canadensis (eastern hemlock)

Kalmia latifolia (mountain laurel)

Ilex glabra (inkberry) 

All of the following suggestions are deciduous, but those spring blossoms may be worth a bit of winter car traffic.

Rhododendron periclymenoides (pink azalea)

Rhododendron prinophyllum (early azalea)

Rhododendron maximum(great laurel)

Crataegus opaca (riverflat hawthorn)

Crataegus uniflora (dwarf hawthorn)

 


Ilex opaca

Cephalanthus occidentalis

Thuja occidentalis

Juniperus virginiana

Tsuga canadensis

Kalmia latifolia

Ilex glabra

Rhododendron periclymenoides

Rhododendron prinophyllum

Crataegus opaca

Crataegus uniflora
 

More Privacy Screening Questions

Alternate native plants for bamboo as a privacy screen in Austin, TX.
July 26, 2011 - Can you recommend a bamboo that I can plant, acting as a privacy screen, reaching at least 10'-12'? We are looking for a bamboo that does not spread, and can take the afternoon sun. It will be pla...
view the full question and answer

Deer resistant, Shaded Privacy Hedge for Wakefield RI
September 12, 2013 - We recently removed the dead undergrowth of white pines that were used for privacy. We need advice as to what type of evergreen would be suitable for growth beneath the branches above. It is VERY shad...
view the full question and answer

Fast-growing, non-poisonous evergreen vine for California
March 14, 2013 - Hi, I am in the north bay area of California, north of San Francisco, need a quick growing vine to cover a very long section of chain link fence that is not poisonous (back yard backs up to school pla...
view the full question and answer

Evergreen hedge for Dallas-Fort Worth area
May 18, 2010 - Our red tip photina hedge is slowly succumbing to black spot and we'll need to replace it within the year. (Yes, I now understand red tips come in two varieties: diseased and about to become disease...
view the full question and answer

Trees for privacy screen in California
May 31, 2013 - Hi Mr. Smartypants, We are first-time home-buyers of a cute little house and a relatively large lot in Pacific Grove, CA. Unfortunately the neighbors to the north have built a second story with a nic...
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