One more time with pics, property line landscape ideas...

summiebee(44601)May 6, 2007

Of course in a developement we have some neighbor issues and the fact we are on a rounded corner on a pie shaped lot leaves the backyard open to everything. I have a neighbor on each side. The side that my deck is on is where I'd like the most privacy, the property line is narrow and all any landscape designer has been telling me is arborviates. I know that will block the neighbors, but I am not sure fond of coming onto my deck and seeing all green. I am not sure how some small pine type pines would look staggered with some grasses and shrub type roses plantes about. Would that give enough privacy?

Here is the property line in question..

my home is on the left and my deck faces neighbors deck...not how the neighbor behind has a row of viates as a screen planting along his drive...

here is the line looking from one property line across my yard to the other

here is from the back to the street on the side where the viate were going to be...we will be taking any landscape to the STREET to keep children in their own yards and so we can go onto our deck and not feel like we are in a fishbowl.

The other side we plan to take the landscape halfway to the street (to the first flowering tree you see) We had originally planned a bed with 4-5 pines in it with some ornamental grasses for this side and I could plant some favorite flowers or rose bushes as I wanted at my own pace.

this is a pic of the side from the back of my lot

So what to do now? I would like to get this going asap. I am in NE Ohio and it's planting weather here...or so they say...We just need privacy and our yard to ourselves. No visitors without invitations.

We also drove around today in some older neighborhoods and the ones that have teh arborviates are HUGE. I mean bigger than the homes. I did not like the look of that for the future. We have three estimates for what we thought we wanted on each side, but now we are unsure.

Thoughts, ideas? Dh and I are just really upset with some issues as of late and I'd love to have some creativeimout to take to someone and make it all happen and soon.

Thanks SO much for taking the time to read this. We are just drained with it all at this point.


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madtripper(5/6 Guelph)

In my opinion there are only two ways to create tear round privacy from neighbors - fence or evergreens. From the look of the neighbourhood, fences are not popular. You could go with a combination. At the back near the deck put up a fence, or call it long trelis. Toward the back some evergreens. Toward the front, between the houses, you can use a much lower fence and shrubs, or just shrubs alone.

At my last house, the neighbor put up a simple latice screens, about 8 ft long and 8 ft tall to keep me from looking onto their patio. They covered it with vines and it looked quite good and did it's job.

    Bookmark   May 6, 2007 at 8:00PM
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saypoint(6b CT)

Pines will get as big or bigger than arborvitae in time, and will drop a ton of needles and, later on, branches as well. The 'Emerald Green' Arborvitae are not as tall as some others like 'Green Giant'.

If you want privacy on your deck, which is raised, it seems like you'll need fairly tall plants for screening. Have someone stand in the area where you plan to plant your screen and hold a broomstick or something tall overhead to gauge, from the deck, how tall you really need your plantings to be.

Once you know that, you can go to the local nursery, or to the library, or the Shrub forum, and find out what will do well in your area, in presumably full sun, that is tall enough to accomplish your goal.

A mixed border of evergreen and deciduous shrubs would look better than a row of arbs, but will take longer to reach a good height. If you want to buy large specimens of other plants to get a head start on the height, you may want to have them planted by the nursery, as large B and B shrubs are fairly heavy.

P.S. Piling mulch against the trunks of trees is very bad for the trees. Mulch should be 3-4 inches at most, and should be kept off the bark completely, or you increase the risk of insect, diseases, or rodents doing serious damage to the health of the tree.

    Bookmark   May 6, 2007 at 8:11PM
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bboy(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

You can see how shadowy and abrupt a line of arborvitaes is already by looking at the one already on the scene. Informal groupings of mixed trees, shrubs and flowers at stragetic points would be much more compatible with the tone of the existing scene. Look at the library or a used book store for GARDEN DESIGN ILLUSTRATED by Grant and Grant to see how to make attractive lawn and bed shapes.

    Bookmark   May 7, 2007 at 8:27PM
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We had someone come out last night and he thinks blue spruce along the longer property line that is more narrow would work best? He said the arborviate are too soft, the kids will walk right though them? He said at the deck area and where it is narrow on the corner of the house by the bed that has the serviceberry in it that we could use a few vibernum(sp?) the kind that get pretty big along with some sort of cypress that looks like a pine tree but it look sort of weeping. He showed me a picture, but I cannot remember the name. The towards the end of the street where we have more room we could stretch the bed out and giveit a bump and plant some things there? He said he can even leave thae bed that he bumps out just dirt and I can plant things as I wish on my own. (He knows I have kind of been wanting a perrenial bed.)

What do you think of this idea? He said with some triming we can keep the blue spruce at 12 feetish?

    Bookmark   May 9, 2007 at 6:22AM
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You could put a grouping of three Heritage Clump Birch, or something else, between your deck and their deck and still enjoy the openess of the lawns extending across the property lines. There really does not seem to be a need to screen much else, does there?

I don't see any real privacy to be gained by planting up the front lawn along the border. If the idea is to keep the neighbors out, its a different story, but carving out your perimeter in plants on an odd shaped lot is going to call out the odd shaped lot.

If the problem is lack of privacy between the two decks, don't get sidetracked.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2007 at 7:07AM
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I don't think blue spruce would get dense enough unless you sheared them. If you want the same look, try Blue Point Juniper. It stays pretty small 12-15 feet and grows about 15 inches a year. I think a mixture of Blue Point Juniper and Lilac shrubs would be really pretty! Both would get large enough to fence the yards apart. The only bad thing about using plants as a fence is that you gotta wait for them to get big. :(
I'd do a few juniper, then several lilac, a few juniper, several lilac. Play around with the numbers and see what looks good. Leave a space between the lawn and the first shrub so you could have some room to plant roses, annuals, veggies, whatever you felt like. Your neighbor could plant whatever they felt like on the other side.
Good Luck!

    Bookmark   May 9, 2007 at 8:26AM
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Here's a little pic of the Blue Point, and you already know what a Lilac looks like. You have SO many options with lilacs, type, eventual size, color...


    Bookmark   May 9, 2007 at 8:37AM
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Well you are right in your gess in keeping people out. We want it so the kids cannot walk around it to our home. I do not even know where to begin. They are here every night all night until bedtime. Little or no supervision. Their little one punches my 3 year old we send her home constantly and she comes right back. We were haivng dinner on our deck last night and I told them they needed to go home and play until we were done they sat there arms crossed and said NO. we are staying HERE. My response was firmer then. Three weeks ago my back door was unlocked and their child came in helped herself to oolaid and then spilled it all over my sofa without my kmowledge. My children and I were in teh front yard. I tired to paint the deck, guess who is right there? The latest straw that broke the camels back in the husband saying inappropiate things to me. Then acting like it's a "joke" He then sent several messages to my MSN and my email all of which I showed my husband and then his wife found them and came to accuse ME of having an affair withher husband. Sigh. See what I mean? I should probably just move, but I was here first and I am not sure they will be able to keep their house much longer. They are abit overextended and that is another story in itself.

I like the blue point spruce. THose are pretty.

CLump birch are very pretty and I would not mind some in my yard somewhere, but we need something that children will not walk around.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2007 at 10:20PM
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Poor you! And their kids will grow up to be JUST like them you know :)
You should stay though. Its a beautiful house, yard, and looks like a beautiful neighborhood! Dont punish yourself for having bad neighbors by moving.
The problem you're going to have is that plants take awhile to make a 'fence'. Plus the bratty kids sound like they'd just make tunnels through anyway. It sounds like it would be worth it to put up a hardscape fence. You could always plant things on your side of the fence to cover it. Thats what I would do if I had your neighbors :)
Good Luck!

    Bookmark   May 11, 2007 at 2:52AM
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You do have a problem! A fence is the answer with a shrub border planted along it. If you were living in a bit warmer climate then I would suggest planting a gorse hedge. Invasive, but it would stop the little darlings!

    Bookmark   May 11, 2007 at 8:53AM
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Yeah I know. It's a mess. Can you tell how mad I am about it by my typos. My blood boils when I go into detail. LOL.

A fence Ugh. I know I know. Probably what I really. need. I just am not so sure about it. I know they make prettier ones I am actually scared what their kids would do to it on the other side. Like color it or marker it up? I also do not see any other fence anywhere in the neighborhood. I will need to check the developement codes and rules. It may not be allowed. I just thought if we mounded it up and made it so you would HAVE to walk through a bed to get to our house they would stay away. I actually DO have them trained NOT to walk into my flower bed. I have no idea why they respect that rule. I also feel like why should I look at a fence because of them!!! Know what I mean?

    Bookmark   May 11, 2007 at 10:05AM
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With that additional information, you need a fence. Nothing else is going to do what you want it to do in the time period in which you need it done. So, fence, or wait them out.

    Bookmark   May 11, 2007 at 12:31PM
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saypoint(6b CT)

A solid line of William Baffin roses, which get quite large, and have thorns that will rip your skin off. Very pretty in bloom, too. Grows quickly.

If you are able to put in a fence, and do, and the kids deface or damage the other side, you can have them arrested for vandalism. Just make sure you put the fence far enough inside your own property line that you can maintain it without setting foot on their property.

    Bookmark   May 11, 2007 at 4:58PM
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I have to agree. You desperately need a fence. If the neighbors dog were continually coming over causing trouble, you'd call animal control, right? So call social services. These people are not supervising their children.

There are several thorny shrubs with attractive foliage. Bayberry comes to mind, as it is readily available, not expensive, tolerant of almost any soil condition, and fairly fast growing. I would think it would have an advantage over roses, since it is bushier than most roses, not easily broken down. It could be planted fairly thickly, and while it wouldn't quickly provide a screen, it would keep the brats out.

    Bookmark   May 11, 2007 at 10:19PM
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bboy(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

Fence with mixed border or informal shrubbery in front much more attractive and effective than rows of conifers marching through the scene like an invading army. Errant kids would probably find these latter a source of play interest rather than a deterrent.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2007 at 1:12AM
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giboosi_alttara(z6 CT)

Barberry down the line to keep them out, then the clump birch strategically placed in front of the barberry to screen the view of the deck. You could do the red/purple barberry types which would be lovely as a backdrop for white birches, and even put in a few of the Blue Points for more color.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2007 at 12:10PM
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lpinkmountain(5b/6a border PA)

A line of spruces interplanted with honkin' big shrub roses would keep kids out . . . in about 5 to ten years. Meanwhile the kids might wreck the smaller trees as they grew. If the problem is really the kids, a fence is the way to go. Buy something nice and plant along it on your side. So sorry you have to deal with this. I grew up living on a corner lot and we had yard problems for years, a fence is the best short term solution. I couldn't believe what some people would walk through and around to trespass in our yard.

That said, I once saw a border of a large property lined with blue and white spruces, it was impressive. I also like those old lilac hedges. But both of these solutions take time. Fence for now, plant against it with an eye towards someday maybe being able to take it down, I agree, think if it as a large trellis.

Meanwhile, call the kids parents and tell them the kids need to go home. Or call the cops once, that might scare them away. They are trespassing after all. Try to remember that kids go through phases, this will pass eventually if you weather it out.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2007 at 1:40PM
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Concertina wire will keep all but the most determined sappers out, maintain your view, but it probably annoy your neighbors a little.

This is a parenting issue that you need to discuss with the kids parents. Children should not be running around without supervision and disrespecting private property. Politely tell your neighbor that you are not their baby-sitting service or kid's feeding-station. Suggest they watch Supper Nanny for pointers on kids.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2007 at 8:29AM
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Thanks for understanding and not thinking I am some mean person who dislikes children. I do not mind them when they are invited, but there are no formal rules. Ieven talked tot he parents once about it with a nice approach. I said..."We love your children and enjoying having them over, but for structured playdates." I also said I cannot watch 5 kids total and do well at it and if something happened to one of your babies I would feel awful" I tried to be very nice because I have to live next to these people.

Landscaper called and said he can get some tall 12 foot blue spruce in. We are having someonefrom a fencing company come out to show us options. A plastic or wood fence is not allowed. We have to have wrought iron or a combo of masonary and srought iron??? Per developement codes. I am going to talk to the person in charge and see if that can be bent at all. I see my other neighbor has a large storage barn that does not comply with codes in the "rule book". All in all do you think that I will be able to get thise money back out of my home in the future?

    Bookmark   May 14, 2007 at 9:11AM
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An open feeling is all fine and good, but a large percentage of the people who in the future might buy your home will, at some time in the past, have experienced a nasty neighbor. I think most people appreciate that a good fence makes better neighbors.

I would definitely talk to the person in charge and see if you can't get a variance or something. Possibly as a temporary thing since the neighbors may very well be losing the home to foreclosure and then you could take it down.

And giboosi_alttara is right, barberry is the correct name. (Have to start wearing my glasses when I proofread!)

    Bookmark   May 14, 2007 at 9:47AM
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Hi! I read your post and it sounds somewhat like our situation (though no accusations about affairs or anything--just unsupervised children!) Anyway, since we moved to our home with a 2 year old, and another on the way, I insisted that if we did nothing else to our landscaping, we needed to install a fence!

Since our neighborhood was somewhat established, and none of our bordering neighbors had fences, we opted for a split rail fence with a green mesh exterior--which is nearly invisible against the grass and landscaping.

This design allowed us to "pen" our child(ren) in, keep the neighbors kids and dogs out, and it was subtle enough so as not to look like a "spite" fence. Once the fence was up, we then planted a mixed row of Rose of Sharon, smallish arborvitaes, along with roses, and barberries (the thorns are also helpful in the fight against would-be entruders!!! LOL!) The other nice thing about this kind of fence is that is CAN be temporary and removed after other plantings fill in, and it is one of the least expensive fencing designs, and both the mesh and individual timbers can easily be replaced if needed. We were able to fence in a relatively large 1/2 acre back yard for about $4000--it may sound a bit expensive, but it was WORTH EVERY PENNY!!!

Just something to consider! Good luck!

    Bookmark   May 15, 2007 at 8:28PM
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Well yesterday she gave me an apology letter for the accusation of affair thing. Ugh. It just makes me mad that someone would think I would do that. My husband is not even that angry about that because he knows that would NEVER happen. He is more upset about the sofa and the lack of family time and privacy and the fact that our ENTIRE yard is open to anyone. It's like COME ON OVER!

Do you have photographs of your fence? I'd love to see it!

    Bookmark   May 16, 2007 at 9:52AM
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bocron(z7a GA)

Plant a row of pyracantha, that'll stop 'em!
We are looking at this type of fence, it's made to look more like and iron fence but is made a bit more like chain link. Nowhere near as costly as iron.

Here is a link that might be useful: jerith

    Bookmark   May 16, 2007 at 7:43PM
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lpinkmountain(5b/6a border PA)

A little more on the roses. I have a large shrub rose on my property, and the old fashioned, shrub roses do grow very fast and are so hardy. I have to shovel prune mine constantly to keep it in line, it would be perfect to keep out kids. It's not that tall, but planted close could be very effective, and pretty. Could be combined with some taller things along a split rail. There's a split rail fence I pass by in my neighborhood that has bright red climbing roses mixed with junipers along it--gorgeous in the summer and the junipers look nice in the winter. I agree that if you keep thinking about it and looking you can find something that pleases aesthetically and also helps with your privacy issues.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2007 at 11:29AM
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