If you’d like some privacy from your neighbors but don’t have a lot of space, here are 5 good choices of narrow plants for screening.
Columnar Juniper provide an evergreen, nearly solid plant screen. They are low water use and good for wind breaks, too. Watch out for snow load breakage when we have a heavy spring snow. There are several varieties providing anything from dark green to blue shades.
Columnar Buckthorn or Fine Line Buckthorn (Rhamnus frangula ‘Columnaris’ or Rhamnus frangula ‘Ron Williams’) both have interesting texture and have a naturally narrow 4-foot diameter at maturity.
Purple Pillar Rose of Sharon (Hibiscus syriacus ‘Gandini Santiago’) is even more narrow, growing up to 10-feet tall but only 2-feet wide. In late summer, it blooms with large 3” purple flowers. The flowers have a tropical feel, but this plant is drought tolerant.
Cheyenne Privet (Ligustrum vulgare ‘Cheyenne’) is one of the plants we visualize when we hear the word “hedge.” Privet accepts shearing well if it’s necessary to keep it in a confined space. It looks fine if left to grow naturally as well. This fast growing shrub attracts pollinators in the spring, and birds in the winter.
Curl Leaf Mountain Mahogany (Cercocarpus ledifolius) isn’t going to win any awards for the most beautiful plant, but it is a tough native shrub. Growing up to 20-feet tall, this shrub is very low water use, is evergreen most winters, and hardy up to 8,000 foot elevations. Like Privet, Mountain Mahogany accepts shearing if the width needs to be kept in check.