Overhaulin
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Joined: Tue Mar 01, 2016 12:12 am
Location: Ohio or zone 6

Natural fence line

I am looking for a shrub to use as a semi privacy/fence line. I live in Ohio or I believe they call it zone 6 and I am looking for something attractive, dense, and somewhere around 5' to 7' in mature height. I want to run them down a 100' foot of property line.

Any suggestions?

Thanks in advance for any help!

imafan26
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Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: Natural fence line

Please put your location and zone in your profile for future reference.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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rainbowgardener
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Location: TN/GA 7b

Re: Natural fence line

Yes, for future reference, it is good to have it so you don't have to keep telling us over and over. But for now Overhauling told us Ohio, zone 6.

Personally, I try to discourage people from planting 100 feet of any one thing. Making a monoculture planting like that makes it a beacon for every disease and pest of that plant. And once the disease/pest finds them, it will spread rapidly from one to the next. California planted 100's of miles of oleander shrubs down the freeway medians. Now they are being attacked by a disease and are all dying and it is costing the state millions of dollars to replace.

If you make a mixed border of a number of different shrubs, the problems will be less likely to find them, they will not spread as easily, because there is more space between individuals and that space is filled with things that the insect or whatever probably doesn't like which acts as a barrier. And worse case, if all the individuals of one type die out, it just leaves a few holes, it doesn't wipe out the whole hedge.

And I think the mixed border is so much prettier and more natural looking. You can have things blooming/fruiting at all different points in the season.....
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applestar
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Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

Re: Natural fence line

I agree with Rainbowgardener. A mixed border hedge of shrubs and perennials, self seeding annuals that are native to your Ohio area of the size you are talking about would create a wonderful sanctuary for the wildlife and migrating birds as well as beneficial insects when their habitat are being willfully destroyed in the name of "progress" and "Development".

Your border could provide a waystation of increased biodiversity for migrating birds. I often think about them flying overhead and looking down, and not finding the rest stop on the return trip that had been there on the way south or north. In this case, they will find a new place to come down and rest or even stay and raise their young. :mrgreen:
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ButterflyLady29
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Location: central Ohio

Re: Natural fence line

A mix of evergreen and flowering/fruiting shrubs would be lovely. I'm trying to create a living fence myself but hubby doesn't like shrubs planted that closely together. He wants to mow around them and just can't get the idea of an old fashioned hedgerow in his mind.

I currently have dwarf Alberta spruce, hazelnuts, shrub roses, rose of sharon, viburnum, dwarf butterfly bush, elderberry, and Nanking cherry in a hedge fence on my property. I would like to extend it with more roses, holly, shrub willow, ninebark, spicebush, and more coniferous evergreens but have to work within time and financial restraints.

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Allyn
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Location: Mississippi Gulf Coast - zone 8b

Re: Natural fence line

Osage Orange doesn't get much play, but it is effective as a windbreak and natural fence if you don't mind being patient for a couple of years. Osage Orange was used by the settlers as a natural fence before the invention of barbed wire. As it grows, you bend the stems over and pin them to the ground and then weave the branches together to the desired height.
Image
(image source: MotherEarthNews)
The resulting fence is dense and quite impervious and very wildlife friendly.
Image
(image source: MotherEarthNews)

ButterflyLady29
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Location: central Ohio

Re: Natural fence line

If I had the land and the need to keep livestock in, the osage orange would be great. There's a reason it's commonly called "hedge" apple. If I could persuade Pop I would help them do a hedge apple windbreak.

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Allyn
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Location: Mississippi Gulf Coast - zone 8b

Re: Natural fence line

I'm more interested in keeping things out -- trespassers, coyotes, bears, boars, bobcats, and a few other things I'd rather not encounter on the property -- as well as the privacy of a dense hedge.

Taiji
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Location: Gardening in western U.P. of MI. 46+ N. lat. elev 1540. zone 3

Re: Natural fence line

I've been planting pyracantha as a dense hedge here. I'm limited in my choices because it has to be something that is extremely drought tolerant in this climate, and pyracantha is, once established. Evergreen foliage and beautiful orange or red berries; and it has thorns, keeps things out! It will get taller than 5 or 7 feet though unless pruned off.

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