Privacy tree


I am looking for a tree that a deciduous tree that:
1 has a bare stem up to 7 ft and then forms a leafy crown
2 has a thick crown you can’t see through
3 can grow up to 10 ft tall
4 is fast growing
5 roots won’t damage foundations
6 sun and partial sun
7 for Toronto
purpose -to create a privacy hedge
If that doesn’t exist am willing to look at coniferous trees as well.


Thank you for contacting Toronto Master Gardeners.

There are many trees or shrubs that can be used for effective hedging.  Your maximum tree height of 3 cm (10 feet) would be classified as a small tree or a shrub.  A number options can be found in previously published answers on our site, see attached links:  Type of tree for privacy hedgePrivacy hedge, Privacy Deciduous Trees, Evergreen Privacy Hedge Options.

Your challenge will be finding a small deciduous tree that has a bare stem up to 2 metres but is only 3 metres tall.  A healthy crown ratio when pruning deciduous trees is 2/3 canopy, 1/3 trunk.  The ratio in your desired tree is 3/10 canopy, 7/10 trunk.  The 66% live crown ratio is important to avoid breakage of the tree during high winds.  You also didn’t mention the type of soil you have.  Soil type should be considered for your choice of tree.

As your requirements are very specific, I’d recommend you consult with your local nursery or a professional landscape designer.  You can find landscape designers in your area through Landscape Ontario.

You will also find useful information about hedges (including planting and maintenance) in the following Toronto Master Gardeners Guides:

Evergreens Suitable for Hedging:  A Toronto Master Gardeners Guide

Ornamental Shrubs for Various Light Conditions:  A Toronto Master Gardeners Guide

Gardening with Native Shrubs:  A Toronto Master Gardeners Guide

Good luck with your decision!