Building a fence can be expensive and a lot of work if you plan to do it yourself. It can be even more expensive if you plan to hire someone out to do the work for you. Fences don’t come cheap, but you can plant your own for a little more privacy this summer! A living fence is a beautiful way to add more nature to your backyard, to cover up a chaink link fence and to keep snoopy neighbours from peeking into your yard while you’re sunbathing. Or, letting it all hang out on your deck, slouching and shoving snacks in your face. Either or.
Sunflowers make a beautiful living fence and I plant a whole wall of them every year in my garden. Just two rows of these beauties will have you feeling like you’re living in a Van Gogh painting. Sunflower stalks can get pretty thick (and can be a pain in the ass to rip out in the fall/following spring), so plant them close to the fence, but with enough room to grow. About half a foot from the edge of the fence is a great place to start your rows. You can buy giant sunflowers for those of you who want extra height and uumph in your garden. Cut sunflowers will still give you some privacy and will have much smaller heads, perfect for arrangements!
Duh. Trees make the best fences and they’re often used as a ‘shelter belt’ around farm properties. Unless you buy 4-6 foot trees from the nursery, they’re going to take a long time to grow. But, they won’t have to be continuously planted every year. Poplars grow fast and tall, but if you want a thick fence to block out those neighbours, try cedars or any pine.
A nice, fragrant lilac hedge planted around your yard can make for wonderful bouquets and jellies and will keep your yard feeling like a private garden.
While hydrageas may not get as tall here on the prairies as they would down south, they can help give your yard a little privacy and beauty. Plant them on their own or in front of fast growing trees like poplars for extra protection.
Corn makes for an excellent fence, much like sunflowers. They grow tall and relatively quick, although you may not be reaping the benefits of their height until late summer. Plant them into a raised garden bed edging your yard for extra height much more quickly. Try mixing them with sunflowers for a fallrific vibe come September.
Really, any climbing vegetable or flower (like sweet peas or climbing roses!) will do for this. Dig out a garden bed in front of your fence, or where you wish a fence was, or add a large planter. Place a trellis in your garden/planter and pop some cucumber (or beans or squash – as long as your trellis is sturdy enough to hold the squash) and watch it grow into a yummy green wall.