I had this problem to solve, I needed screening privacy for my deck, patio, pool and my air conditioning unit, but was renting. After looking for inspiration, brainstorming and
much research, this is the solution I came up with.
Versatile, portable, and effective plants in pots to the rescue.
When you want to screen for privacy, a few
- pampas grass
- red twig/ yellow twig dogwood
- dog fennel
- Elephant ear
- Emerald Green Arborvitae
How to find “The One”
Which you choose depends on many factors. The first thing to consider is when do you need screening. Just for the summer? Do you need screening all year? Thick screening in summer, however, need only thin screening in the winter months?
After you have focused on your screening needs, next, what type of containers are you going to use? Many medium to large individual containers will be more portable than single very large long trough containers if that is a consideration. How will this affect your visual design? For the plants to thrive and for stability, the wind not knocking them over, the largest that fits into your other considerations is absolutely the best. Remember, these pots will have tall, dense plants in them on purpose, which will act like a sail and catch the wind. You want solid heavy containers so there will be no worries!
If you choose plants that will THRIVE where you need them, they will be amazing! If you fall in love with a plant, and try to push the envelope and ask it to fit into a growth environment it is not adapted to, not only will they not look good, but it will be so much work just to keep alive! You will never want to do it again. What is the fun in that?
Make sure the plants you have
“I’m dying of thirst here!!!” or, where is the water coming from? You did remember they are going to need water, right?
The larger the pot, the longer it will hold water. Smaller pots might require water 2 times a day! Get the large pot, the largest the proportions on your space and your budget the better. You will thank me!
Or Automated watering, click here to find out about that!
“Again???” or, will I have to plant it every year?
This is where you choose between annuals (plant every year), and perennials (live several years). Who would choose to do the work and expense of new plants every year? Because annuals have a huge bang for the buck!
“MOM, he’s touching me!!!!” or remembering to leave elbow
Even the massive St Bernard, was a cute, tiny puppy once. Plants grow. Some fast, some slow, some small, some monstrous! Look at the tag and believe it! With experience, you will know under which situations the rules can be broken. (Or ask a knowledgeable and friendly plant groupie at your local garden center).
Just because you saw it in a magazine or on Pinterest, doesn’t mean it will work in real life. I know, and yes it does look awesome, but water lilies and cacti don’t have the same likes in growing conditions…disaster!!
“Hey, you’re a slob!!” or, will it drop leaves into the pool?
That one is self-explanatory. But a consideration easily overlooked!
How large or mature (read expensive) to buy your plants? How tall do you want your living screen? The same consideration as if you were planting in the ground, or building a fence, just remember to consider the container height, and it is giving you a jump start!
If you want to know if you need saucers, click here to read a short bit I wrote to answer that question.
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