Creating a More Private Garden

natural reed fence creates privacyThis dense-weave fence provides plenty of privacy and blends well with any garden setting.

Maybe you're renting, maybe you live in a densely developed area, or maybe you just want a little private oasis to call your own. Either way, 

Here are 3 ways to create a sense of serenity in your garden:

1. Fence It In

 Metal privacy screenA privacy screen helps define your garden space.

This one is a no-brainer. There's nothing like a fence to create a private, outdoor room. If you don't want to invest in a permanent fence, try out a temporary privacy screen that can be moved around. Enjoy them as they are, or cover them with lush houseplants (like the staghorn fern, to the left). Set a bench or small accent table within the structure to create your own outdoor oasis.

2. Plant It Up

Instead of a solid hedge of yews or cedars, consider a staggered planting of trees to filter the view without blocking it completely. You'll create a feeling of more space by borrowing part of the view beyond your yard. Evergreens are a good choice for hedges (they'll retain green foliage year-round), but you can also use deciduous trees or shrubs, such as lilacs, which grow quickly and have fragrant springtime flowers.

Ornamental grasses—especially the taller varieties—can be used to create screens. Create a "hedge" of tall annuals; a dense planting of corn or sunflowers will do the trick.

3. Get Creative

Clematis vine growing up a trellis A trellis covered in purple Clematis provides privacy and beautiful color.

Use trellises or obelisks to create seasonal screens. Cover them with fast-growing flowering vines, such as morning glories, sweet peas, or black-eyed Susan vine (Thunbergia spp.). Interested in edibles? Beans, cucumbers, and even squash can be trained to grow up a trellis or arbor. A series of overflowing hanging baskets also adds privacy and beauty to any deck or patio area.

Last updated: 03/08/2024