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Seeking advice on evergreens for screening Need aproximately 40'+

Posted by Cheeba118 6 (My Page) on
Sun, Sep 8, 13 at 20:46

I have a neighbor about 150 ft behind me, but up a hill. In the summer, I can not see them, but in the winter they can see right into the back of my house. There is a fairly thick tree line between us, but most of them lose their leaves in the winter (Primarily cottonwood). The original owner planted a line of white pines along the back and the cottonwoods filled in around them as volunteers. The white pines are now about 25 years old. When I recently moved in, two of them were dead and this year two more died. Last year was horrible hot and dry and hard on pines in particular. I am not sure if that is what killed them or what.

- I want to basically replace the ones that have died to provide for a better screen in the winter time.

- The white pines are not very thick and I would prefer to replace them with something thicker.

- I like white pines but would like to add some diversity.

- While the cottonwoods are not very dense, they would at least initially be growing in partial shade if possible. If not I can cut them down, but would prefer to wait until I have a different screen in place (Screen in summer is better than none)

- I need them to be a minimum of 40ft tall at maturity.

- I would greatly prefer something that grows somewhat quickly but would be willing to trade off for something that is just a good, hearty tree, that looks beautiful.

- I am in zone 6

Does anyone have any suggestions for me. I was kicking around the following but am far from settled on them and want to know what you think.

Calocedrus decurrens - aka California Incense Cedar

Leyland Cypress

Arborvitae - Green Giant

Any assistance would be extremely appreciated.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Seeking advice on evergreens for screening Need aproximately

you could mix in some Norway Spruce with the Green Giants. The GG will grow much faster. Expect the Spruce to put on 1 1/2 ft a year, the GG almost double that. If you have the room, I would do two rows 20 ft apart of the Spruce with the GG's placed in between as the second row, so you have a staggered set up. You could do the GG row 25 feet from the row of Spruces. Something like this:



For some reason i cant seem to show that the GG row should be in between the NS row, but you get the picture.

RE: Seeking advice on evergreens for screening Need aproximately

why no pic.. i am that kind of guy ....

plants.. planted much closer to the house/window... can solve your problem.. a lot faster than at the property line...

i am concerned you have gotten yourself in a property line box.. and are failing to look outside it ...

the biggest issue is that vigor will be defined by full sun ... and when you start dealing with sun reduced by shade.. then you are reducing vigor.. which here.. translates into height ... it might takes decades to grow to the height you want...

so start looking closer to the house ...??? .. OR BOTH ....

need to know where you are.... is snow load an issue??? ... and is the incense zone hardy?????


ps: also ... you dont need a curtain ... you need only address his windows.. and your windows ... e.g. if he only has two windows.. in theory.. you only need two plants ...

pps: you may also find.. as the years roll by.. that you simply dont spend a lot of time out on your back deck ... lets say ... so even though the trees are deciduous ... its not that big a deal ....

RE: Seeking advice on evergreens for screening Need aproximately

Roger, I get what you are saying.

Ken, Here is a picture. I took about 5 but they are not allowing me to download them. Eventually, the back of the property line now looks like it backs to woods in the summer time. There was basically a line of white pines that were originally put in. Then there were a few trees that grew in including a persimmons tree, a few cotton wood trees, and a couple of maple trees. Near the ground, it is full of honey suckles. It basically looks like wild woods. I plan on cutting out the honeysuckles and cutting down the two dead white pines that are still there. The remaining three or 4 white pines will remain as well ass the cottonwood trees. I plan on filling the void from the dead pine trees with new evergreens to eventually separate our home from the rear neighbors home even in the winter. Thoughts?

RE: Seeking advice on evergreens for screening Need aproximately


RE: Seeking advice on evergreens for screening Need aproximately

Pic 3

RE: Seeking advice on evergreens for screening Need aproximately

Pic 4 (View from master bedroom balcony)

RE: Seeking advice on evergreens for screening Need aproximately

In Pic 3, you can see that there are a coupe of the original white pines, but they are not very thick. You can also see one of the ones that turned completely brown. Do you think that that area is to thick to thin out and then try to replace the trees that have died? If need be, I can cut out the cottonwoods, but they are fairly large and have not released cotton this year, which is annoying. I just moved in in March. The entire yard was basically overgrown. I spent the first month with a chain saw cutting out bushes and trees beyond repair. It is a clearly a big project.

RE: Seeking advice on evergreens for screening Need aproximately

The Incense Cedar is a good choice. However, they will grow tall and in time lose their lower branches.

From the pictures it looks like you get a fair amount of rain. Your heading says zone 6. So, I have some suggestions. First get rid of the cottonwoods. Personally, I hate them and their cotton.

Whit firs (Abies concolor) would be good choices for screening, especially if interplanted with incense cedar. Western Red Cedar (Thuja plicata) would also be a good screen plant. They keep their branches all the way to the ground. The Sierra Redwood (Sequioadendron giganteum) would be one to seriously consider. Yes, they grow 300 feet tall and 30 feet in diameter, but not in your lifetime. They grow rapidly and in a normal human lifetime will get about 50-75 feet tall and around 3 feet in diameter trunk. The spread would be about 20 -30 feet. They will keep their lower branches for many years. Also, they are quite prickly to reach into and will discourage unwanted visitors in that way.

My best advice would be to plant a mixed row of all these. Being as they are evergreens they will not have super deep roots and being planted together they help to support each other in high winds. The snow load is not a problem for these trees. They are all cold hardy in zone 6. The Thuja has several different regional varieties. If you go for them, make sure the parent stock is from inland varieties as the coastal varieties are not cold hardy in your zone.

These trees are all available online and you can probably get them in small tubes for large scale, economic planting.

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