HELLO – WE ARE ON A CORNER LOT IN THE “HIGH PARK” NEIGHBOURHOOD OF TORONTO. WE HAVE A FENCE BETWEEN THE HOUSE AND THE STREET ABOUT 20 FEET LONG WHERE WE WANT TO PLANT SOME KIND OF FAST GROWING – PREFERABLY EVERGREEN – SHRUB OR TREE – IN ORDER TO PROVIDE PRIVACY. WHAT PLANT WOULD YOU RECOMMEND?? THANK YOU. P.S WE HAVE ALREADY PLANTED A FEW EUONYMOUS BUSHES BUT THEY ARE SMALL AND DO NOT GROW VERY FAST.WE COULD POSSIBLY RELOCATE THEM IF YOU CAN RECOMMEND SOMETHING BETTER.
It sounds like a wonderful project and having given it some thought, Yews may be the perfect plants for your situation. Below, I have listed three types that can be found quite easily in good nurseries in and around the GTA.
Taxus × media ‘Hatfieldii’ — This broad pyramidal Yew can grow to 8′ tall over the first 10 years, but eventually matures to 12-15′ tall by 8-10′ wide, unless pruned shorter. It is a male clone that produces no red fruit.
Taxus x media ‘Brownii – This Yew is an excellent choice for a low, dense hedge. It is broad and densely-rounded and it typically grows to 8-10′ tall and spreads to 6-12′ wide. That being said, these plants can be kept smaller through regular pruning. This is a male clone that will not produce fleshy, berry-like fruits.
Taxus x media ‘Hicksii’ – Hicks Yew. This is an excellent choice for tall hedges, and is a traditional hedge plant. Slow grower to 10 to 12 ft. tall, 3 to 4 ft. wide.
I’m also including some care instructions for you, see below.
Plant likes: Full sun to part shade. Average to medium moisture, well-drained soils. Shade tolerance: excellent evergreen for shady conditions. Accept pruning and shearing well. Like moist, sandy loams. Tolerate urban conditions.
Plant dislikes: Poor drainage (no tolerance for wet conditions – root rot can occur in soils with poor drainage). Need to be protected from cold winter winds (susceptible to winter burn in exposed sites). No serious insect or disease problems.
Disease and Pests: Generally pest & disease free but twig and needle blight can be a problem. Weevils, mealybugs, spider mites and scale can be problems in drier summer climates.
Best time to prune: Early spring before new growth appears.
What tools to use: Hand held or electric hedge clippers.
One word of caution: all parts of these plants are poisonous if eaten.