privacy hedge

(Question)

Brampton, Ontario: We lost a lot of our cedar hedges that back onto the park, due to the ice storm. But whatever survived, we want to keep. On the other side of our 100 ft long fence are a number of spruce trees, so whatever we plant must be able to grow in shade. What can we plant that we give us the privacy that we want. We don’t have a huge budget and we would like something that would grow quite quickly. We are close to the Heart Lake Conservation.

(Answer)

Sorry to  hear your garden sustained damage from the ice storm.

For replacements and for privacy you could consider more cedars such as the Eastern White Cedar Thuja occidentalis, or Junipers (Juniperus spp) both grow in sun to part shade.

Other options, for heavier shade are Yew (Taxus spp) Holly (Ilex spp) or Hemlock (Tsuga canadensis. 

The Cedar and the Holly can grow quite quickly, the others will also make good progress given good soil and moisture.

See more about these plants at the following links:

https://www.missouribotanicalgarden.org/PlantFinder/PlantFinderDetails.aspx?kempercode=v890

https://www.missouribotanicalgarden.org/PlantFinder/PlantFinderDetails.aspx?kempercode=c243

You might also want to check out the Toronto Master Gardeners Garden Guide on evergreens for hedges:

https://www.torontomastergardeners.ca/index.php/factsheet/evergreens-suitable-for-hedging-a-toronto-master-gardeners-guide/

Depending on your budget you could consider buying a few larger specimens each year or, if you can wait a little longer, more smaller specimens to provide greater coverage in the long run.

Good luck with your Ice Storm damage repair program!