I want to plant a privacy evergreen tree-hedge or shrub that grow up to 10 meters or 30 feet at the back of my small backyard to block views of my neighbor as they also have a small backyard. I live in the city of Vaughan Ontario. I’d appreciate it if you could help or guide me what trees are good. My backyard is fronting north but the side I am planning to have the trees are exposed to full sun for 6 hours.
Thank you for contacting the Toronto Master Gardeners with your question about evergreen hedges. There are several factors that need to be taken into account when selecting a type of hedge, including soil and exposure to the elements, including sun, which you mentioned in your question.
Some of the options available for tall hedges include the Eastern White Cedar (thuja occidentalis) and Juniper (Juniperus). The Eastern White Cedar requires neutral to alkaline moist soil with good drainage and likes a sunny location but also tolerates shade. It does not tolerate road salt. This beautiful tree is also called the Eastern arborvitae, or tree of life. Another possibility is to plant Emerald cedars which are excellent accent trees as they are very bushy, dense and keep a deep green colour all year round. However, they are not as hardy as the Eastern White Cedar and do not grow as tall. You will find options for evergreen hedges in this Toronto Master Gardener gardening guide: https://www.torontomastergardeners.ca/gardeningguides/evergreens-suitable-for-hedging-a-toronto-master-gardeners-guide/.
No matter what tree you choose, it is vital that it is planted properly. Even a healthy tree ideally suited to your location, receiving all the TLC you can give it, will suffer and even die if it is incorrectly planted and not cared for post-planting. For more information, please go to Planting a Tree: A Toronto Master Gardeners Guide
You may also find our Gardening Guide on mulch useful: https://www.torontomastergardeners.ca/gardeningguides/using-mulch-in-your-organic-garden-a-toronto-master-gardeners-guide/
Lastly, there is a wealth of information on cedar hedging on our website. Simply type Cedar Hedging in the Find it Here box located on the right side of the page.