Host an Event Volunteer Join Tickets

Suppport the plant database you love!

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

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Friday - March 19, 2010

From: Phoenix, AZ
Region: Southwest
Topic: Privacy Screening
Title: Privacy hedge plant for Phoenix, Arizona.
Answered by: Jackie OKeefe and Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Hi, Can you tell me what would be a good plant or shrub to block one side of an unsightly 6ft high wrought iron pool fence, and create some privacy. It would be full sun and the hot temperature of Phoenix, AZ.

ANSWER:

Because Maricopa County is in USDA Hardiness Zones 9a to 9b, with apparently higher elevations and lower temperature zones to the north and east of you, we are going to choose not just plants native to Arizona, but plants native to your area of Arizona. A plant native to northeastern Arizona would fry in your situation in southwestern Arizona.  We tried to find evergreen plants, for year-round privacy, but not all of these plants are evergreen.

From our Native Plant Database:

Anisacanthus thurberi (Thurber's desert honeysuckle) - deciduous, 6 to 12 ft., sun, low water use, pictures

Cercocarpus montanus (alderleaf mountain mahogany) - semi-evergreen, 8 to 20 ft., low water use, sun

Dodonaea viscosa (Florida hopbush) - evergreen, to 12 ft., blooms yellow August to November, low water use, sun

Mahonia haematocarpa (red barberry) - 3 to 8 ft., evergreen, low water use, sun

Simmondsia chinensis (jojoba) - deciduous with persistent leaves, to 6 ft. tall, low water use, sun to part shade

Tecoma stans (yellow trumpetbush) - to 9 ft. tall, deciduous, blooms yellow April to November, low water use, sun or part shade

From our Native Plant Image Gallery:


Cercocarpus montanus

Dodonaea viscosa

Mahonia haematocarpa

Simmondsia chinensis

Dodonaea viscosa

 

 

 

More Privacy Screening Questions

Small trees for property edge in Katy TX
April 16, 2012 - By deed restriction, I must have five trees on the side of my small suburban lot just west of Houston, TX. Due to the lot layout, the trunks are only about 8-10 feet from the house, with the trees abo...
view the full question and answer

Trees and shrubs in Wisconsin
July 30, 2009 - I live in Hudson, WI, just across the border from Minn/St Paul and would like to create a privacy screen between my front yard and my neighbors yard. Right now it's full sun, but I want to plant a c...
view the full question and answer

Patio Privacy Screen Suggestions for Central Texas
March 17, 2013 - I have just built a patio and want to plant some small trees, bushes or shrubs to form a visual barrier (rather than to erect a fence)to the neighbors yard.
view the full question and answer

Privacy screen from Simpsonville SC
May 04, 2013 - My neighbor cut down his part of our shared woods so now we see his whole "outside patio area". What kinds of fast growing shade loving trees and shrubs can we plant on our property line that will c...
view the full question and answer

Evergreen Hedge for Austin
November 28, 2010 - Hello, We live in Austin and have a yard that is almost fully shaded. We have a few burford holly bushes there, but would like to add some evergreen interest. We would love a tall hedge (around 8 ft...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.