Neighbors too close? No fences allowed by your H.O.A.? Street traffic a little too noisy?
ISA Master Arborist and Tree Shepherds owner, Scott Geer has the following suggestion for trees and plants that can help make your landscape more private and less noisy.
All the species recommended are evergreen, meaning they’ll add color to any landscape year-round. They’re also drought tolerant, so they’ll fare well in the North Texas heat.
Eastern Red-cedar (Juniperus virginiana) is native to North Texas. It is very drought tolerant and adapts well to most soil types. It grows best in well-drained areas. If it watered too much, it will struggle. It needs full sun to thrive. The female produces a small silver-blue cone that resembles a berry. The “Juniper berry” is an important food for birds in the winter.
Recommended Varieties of Eastern Red-cedar
There are many varieties of Juniperus virginiana. Each have their own unique characteristics and qualities. Scott recommends the following varieties for landscapes in North Texas in need of screening plants.
- “Taylor” Juniperus virginiana is a narrow, columnar growth variety. Mature height: 20 ft.; width: 3 ft. Annual growth rate: 2 ft per year.
- “Spartan” Juniperus virginiana is also a narrow, columnar growth variety. It has a wider spread than Taylor. Mature height: 15 ft.; width: 5 ft. Annual growth rate: 2 ft per year.
- “Brodie” Juniperus virginiana is a wide growth variety. Mature height: 25 ft.; width: 12 ft. Annual growth rate: 2 ft per year.
Nellie R. Stevens Holly
The Nellie R. Stevens Holly (Ilex x Nellie R. Stevens) is a beautiful plant with dark green foliage and bright red berries in the winter. The plant is shade tolerant but thrives in full sun. It is fast growing and grow up to 3 ft per year. Mature height: 15 to 25 ft.; width: 10 to 15 ft.
Carolina Laurelcherry / Cherry-Laurel
The Carolina Laurelcherry (Prunus caroliniana) is native to the southern states. It has glossy green leaves and a showy, fragrant white flower which attracts bees. The black fruit that it produces is eaten by wildlife but can be poisonous to pets and humans. It thrives in moist soils and with partial sun/shade. Mature height: 15 to 40 ft.; width: 10 to 35 ft.
Teddybear ® Southern Magnolia
Teddybear ® Southern Magnolia (Magnolia grandiflora) is a dwarf variety of the grand magnolia trees largely associated with southern plantations. The leaves are shiny, green with a velvety, brownish-red underside. The flowers are white, large cup shaped and fragrant. The tree blooms in summer and fall. It grows at a moderate place, thriving in full sun, well-drained soil. Mature height: 16 to 20 ft.; width: 10 to 12 ft.