backyard with rose of sharon privacy barrier

Choosing A Privacy Barrier – Fence or Evergreens?

Sometimes one needs a privacy barrier whether you like your neighbors or not. Let me make this clear. I have no problems with my neighbors at all. Since we moved in last August, they all have been very friendly and kind to us.

It is just that we would like to have a privacy barrier across the back of the yard which faces the back of those neighbors homes. I like to sit and relax outside with my coffee in early mornings in my nightgown or PJs and I don’t feel like that is the best way to impress my neighbors!

Backyard view with current privacy barrier

What Happens To My Privacy Barrier in Winter?

As you can see in the video, those bushes on the left along the back are Rose of Sharon and I really love those. Such pretty colors and it is nice to see them blooming in late July and August here in Ohio. But what happens in winter?

Since the Rose of Sharon is a deciduous bush here in Ohio, it loses all its leaves and therefore I lose that privacy shield that I really want. This is my view now in January.

Backyard view in winter with no privacy barrier

Off to the right there are those Bush Honeysuckle trees that have taken over that rear edge of the yard and I definitely want to get rid of those. But I have to clarify with those rear neighbors which is mine to get rid of or is part of that grove of bush honeysuckle theirs?

Right at the edge of this photo is an evergreen that I think is a Yew or Taxus baccata. I still don’t know if this is on my property or not, but I sort of hope so.

Yew tree leaves or needles, no berries on my tree.

Reading up on that type of tree, it sounds so interesting. I will need to write a different post about that Yew Tree.

Using Evergreens As A Privacy Barrier

It would take a lot of work to plant a privacy barrier full of evergreens but this is the most appealing option for me. Planted about 4-5 feet apart, I would need about 25-30 evergreens spreading about 4-5 feet each.

How many years for this kind of privacy

The rear area of the yard is approximately 125 feet across and it is basically level ground as you can see in the photos. An evergreen that grows at least six foot high would be good and I am looking at arborvitaes especially “North Pole.”

Planting a Privacy barrier
Can I dig that many holes? Nope!

How about renting an Auger from our local tool rental such as Lowe’s or Home Depot? A huge one that takes at least two men to operate rents for $115+ per day. Could we dig all the holes in one day? Two at the most?

Huge expense to have these planted for privacy

At this point in winter, I don’t know what the price of arborvitae would be, but if I was able to get them, for instance , at $75 each and got 25 of them, that would be approximately $1875 plus any soil amendments needed.

18 inch auger to dig holes
18 inch auger for digging holes

What About A Fence As A Privacy Barrier?

If I should choose a fence, my choice would be for those white vinyl panels (not sure if that is what they are made from). Wood is the prettier choice but would need more maintenance than I am willing to give.

Also if one side of the wood fence is toward my neighbor, then I would need to go over to paint/treat their side too so that it stays nice. I feel that it just wouldn’t suit me to go that way. Of course, wood is cheaper in most ways, but vinyl is less maintenance.

Choosing a privacy barrier

We did have a wood fence at a previously owned home and it was built on site, board by board. We had a sloping backyard. Maybe that is the way this fence would be built? We are only looking for fencing across the back, not up the sides too.

Choosing a privacy barrier lower upkeep

Fencing does seem to be a more expensive option since those vinyl panels cost approx $100 to $150. Of course, I would need posts, hardware, caps and the installation double the cost of the fencing itself. I like the look of the fence, but love the evergreen backdrop for the yard.

What am I supposed to choose? I will need to get more info later in the spring and find all the prices current. Then getting a fence installed may be a LOOONG wait. Supply problems and all. If wood prices skyrocket like last year, evergreens win!

Choosing Privacy or Barrier for Backyard

Here is a video showing that area in my back yard. It is just a view of that rear portion of “vegetation” which is growing very thickly back there. Ignore that swing set because it has to be removed also. Might look decent, but it is old and rotting.

I will update you when we make any kind of decision!

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