Tall trees to hide hideous building at the back of property

(Question)

Hello. We recently bought a house behind an industrial building. There is a row of poplar trees on city property right behind our fence but they are not enough to hide the ugly roof top. We need to plant trees at the back and some at the side of our backyard to hide the ugliness. What fast growing tall trees would you recommend? The house is in the Thornhill area I truly appreciate your help with this question.

(Answer)

Thanks for your inquiry. I am assuming that the area receives a fair amount of sun.  I would suggest an evergreen tree; your view will be blocked all year round.  There are several options, as listed below but you will have to be patient as most trees shrubs take a while to get established and growth maybe slow in the first two years.  Good cultural practises are very important

In Central Canada the native White Cedar (Thuja occidentalis) is the most popular of all for use as a hedge. It is inexpensive and often is dug from ‘native plantations’ almost bare root. They sit for a year or two in your garden before growing but when they do you can expect up to a meter of new growth each year. This usually occurs in the 3rd year.

Planting cedars:

– Mark your line with a string or garden hose, to get the hedge straight.
– Dig a trench ½ meter wide and 1/3 meter deep.
– Back fill the bottom of the trench with triple mix (1/3 top soil, 1/3 peat and 1/3 compost)

– Stand your cedars upright in the trench before piling the remainder of the triple mix on their roots.
– Once the cedars are lined up straight, plant them using triple mix and step firmly on the soil as you plant, making firm contact between the soil and the roots of the new trees.
– Water thoroughly and stake every 2 meters with a ‘T’ bar or 2” X 2” stake, using heavy gage wire to secure them in place.
– Most important! Don’t be too ambitious when choosing your new cedars! New trees about 1 meter high will establish much more quickly than large, 2 meter high specimens, unless the large trees have been nursery grown.

For additional information, follow this link

https://mark-cullen.blogspot.ca/2010/09/cedar-hedges-investment-that-grows.html

Eastern White Pine

  • The Eastern white pine (Pinus strobus) is one of the fastest-growing pines. It reaches a height of 10 to 15 feet within 5 years. At maturity, it reaches a height of 50 to 80 feet with a 20- to 40-foot spread. It grows in sun or light shade, as long as the soil is fertile, moist and well-draining. Plant each tree 5 to 7 feet apart to create a hedge. It is not tolerant of air pollution or strong winds.

For more information, follow the link

https://plants.usda.gov/factsheet/pdf/fs_pist.pdf

Also, to get more ideas, please follow this link to one of our gardening guides

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

To avoid winter damage and dessication, ensure to keep your evergreens well watered until frost.