Privacy Bush


I am looking for a full sun, non invasive bush for privacy that grows to about 5 ft. tall. Any thoughts?


Hello – Thanks for contacting the Toronto Master Gardeners.  We receive many requests for recommendations of trees and shrubs that will provide privacy but yours is unique in that you are looking for a shrub that will grow to only about 5 feet. I may be wrong but this sounds like you are looking for a single specimen that would serve as a privacy screen rather than a shrub suitable for hedging or grouping.

I’ve browed through our previous responses for recommendations and encourage you to do the same.  If you are looking for a coniferous shrub that holds it’s foliage year round, please check out our entry here which looks at boxwood, juniper and Hick’s yew for a full sun location. (Note that in the Toronto area, we are not currently recommending boxwood in light of the prevalence of the box tree moth and boxwood blight which are causing considerable damage to boxwood plantings.)

As noted, junipers come in many sizes and shapes. Many are columnar and taller than what you are after. Take a look at the link below to Sea Green (Juniperus  x pfitzeriana ‘Sea Green’) which is a medium sized juniper with a mature height of 4-6 feet and tolerates a variety of soil conditions. 

Juniperus x pfitzeriana ‘Sea Green’

The Hick’s Yew (Taxus x media ‘Hicksii’) mentioned in our post is also a good choice for you. It is an excellent hedging plant but can also be used as a specimen. It’s mature height is much taller than you are after but the shrub easily tolerates heavy pruning to maintain a desired height.

Taxus x media ‘Hicksii’

You can explore other suitable shrubs by going to our homepage and scrolling down to the Find It Here Search box. Enter in your search terms and press enter. Click here to reach our home page.

I’m also including links below to two of are Gardening Guides which may give you other suggestions.

Enjoy your search and contact us again with more details of your requirements and location if I’ve made incorrect assumptions about what you are after.

Evergreens Suitable for Hedging

Ornamental Shrubs for Various Light Conditions