Unconventional Evergreen Plants for Privacy Screens in Your Residential Landscape

Unconventional Evergreen Plants for Privacy Screens in Your Residential Landscape

Jan 26, 2024

Creating privacy in your residential landscape doesn't have to mean sticking to traditional choices like tall fences or rows of the same old shrubs. There's a world of unconventional, evergreen plants that not only provide privacy but also add unique character to your outdoor space. In this article, we'll explore ten varieties of evergreen plants of varying heights that can be used creatively to create distinct privacy screens in your residential landscape.

pieris hedge

10 Unconventional Privacy Screen Plants

1. Little Gem Magnolia (Magnolia grandiflora)

little gem magnolia in black nursery pot

The Little Gem Magnolia is a gorgeous evergreen specimen with shiny oval leaves and dinner-plate-sized blooms. Bring a southern feel with loads of charm and elegance when you plant this tree in a row as a privacy screen!

2. Japanese Pieris (Pieris japonica)

Japanese Pieris, or Andromeda, can be pruned into different shapes. Use it to form sculptural hedges or let it grow naturally to add elegance to your landscape. Additional benefits to this stunning and unconventional privacy shrub include magnificent chains of blooms in early spring and leaves that range in color from green to red.

3. Inkberry Holly (Ilex glabra)

Create a formal or informal hedge by planting this native inkberry holly in rows of varying heights. Its dense foliage provides excellent screening.

4. Dwarf Alberta Spruce (Picea glauca conica)

Dwarf Alberta Spruce are slow-growing, cone-shaped evergreens. These evergreen plants are perfect for containers or lining pathways, adding a touch of formality and privacy to small spaces.

5. Cryptomeria (Cryptomeria japonica)

Plant Cryptomeria trees in a staggered pattern to create a living wall of soft, feathery foliage that can reach impressive heights.

6. Ligustrum recurvifolium (Wavy Leaved Privet)

Usage: This flowering shrub with fragrant flowers can be planted in clusters or along property boundaries to create an informal flowering screen.

flowering viburnum shrub planted in front of blue picket fence

7. Chindo Viburnum (Viburnum awabuki 'Chindo')

Cultivate a fragrant, glossy-leaved hedge by planting Chindo Viburnum. Prune it to your desired height and shape for a formal or casual look.

8. Sky Pencil Holly (Ilex crenata 'Sky Pencil')

This slender, columnar evergreen can be a striking vertical element in your landscape. Plant it in rows or containers to create a unique privacy screen.

9. Mountain Laurel (Kalmia latifolia)

Let this native shrub's beautiful flowers and glossy leaves thrive to create an informal, flowering privacy screen that adds color to your landscape.

10. Columnar Junipers (Juniperus spp.)

These low-maintenance evergreens are drought-tolerant and perfect for creating a dense barrier. Plant them in rows of varying heights to define your space.

Outside of use as a privacy screen, there are many other ways you can incorporate these unconventional evergreen plants into your landscape! Below are just a few options for use.

multi-layered row of evergreen shrubs

Different Ways to Use Unconventional Evergreens

  • Mixed-Height Hedges: Combine different evergreen varieties in staggered rows to create a visually appealing, multi-layered privacy hedge.
  • Potted Privacy: Use container plants like Dwarf Alberta Spruce or Sky Pencil Holly on patios and decks to create mobile privacy screens that can be rearranged as needed.
  • Informal Groupings: Plant evergreens like Ligustrum and Mountain Laurel in clusters to create natural, textured screens that bloom in season.
  • Architectural Focal Points: Incorporate columnar evergreens like Columnar Junipers as focal points in your landscape, enhancing privacy while adding structure.
  • Borders and Boundaries: Use unconventional evergreens to define property lines or create secluded garden rooms within your landscape.

Shop Online For Unconventional Privacy Screens

Incorporating these unconventional evergreen plants into your residential landscape not only provides privacy but also adds personality and charm. Experiment with different varieties, heights, and arrangements to create privacy screens that are as unique as your home and style.

Be sure to consult with local nurseries or landscaping professionals for guidance tailored to your specific region and needs. With a bit of creativity, your landscape can become a haven of privacy and beauty.