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Tree Fence Install - Tree selection ?'s

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by westernmdlawn, Sep 23, 2004.

  1. westernmdlawn

    westernmdlawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 98

    Hi all... I have a customer who is wanting to create a "tree fence." This will serve as a means to provide privacy. Privacy is the ONLY reason for wanting this install. I suggested a fence too, but he would like the trees instead. So - here are some questions that I was hoping some of you experts out there could shed a little light on for me.

    The customer has stated (walked across the street to show me what his neighbor has) that he would like what appears to be pyramidal arborvitae that grow tall and skinny. There will be around 30 trees planted, so they would like to have a low maintenance tree. Also, there is a fair amount of shade from the near by large pine trees.

    1.) I don't have much (from a quality standpoint) in the way of local nursuries. Lowe's has some trees that I could use. Is there anything I should be ware of while shopping at Lowe's for plants? I noticed their prices are significantly cheaper than my not so elaborate local nursury.

    2.) What tree choices do I have to work with. I'm in Zone 6, I need trees that will grow to be at least 8 feet high and for the most part skinny. Fast growth is a plus, but not necessary, low maintenance is a big plus, but not necessary either. Aesthetic appeal is very important here. Also, I want something that will have high chances of taking when planted. I don't want to risk having a bunch of dead trees. I will say that there are very large neighboring pine trees. Will there be a competition issue for resources? I don't want them to starve my baby trees after they are planted.

    3.) How should I determine the best way to amend the soil?

    4.) Finally, is it necessary to mulch around the trees when I'm finished. Considering that this will be a tree fence, mulching will not be desired since it will complicate the mowing chores. I was thinking that I would need to space them about 3-4 feet apart, am I right? I guess that could depend on the species too?

    Thanks in advance for all of your help, it is much appreciated. This would be my first large quantity tree install. Not that 30 is large for some of you, but it will be my largest install to date. Also, one other thing I wanted to mention, here are the prices I got from Lowe's for pyramidal arbs:

    1 gal. (24") - $5.96 each
    2 gal. (36"+) - $12.97 each

    Is this good, or should I shop more?
  2. gvandora

    gvandora LawnSite Member
    Messages: 143

    I think you're going to have to make a field trip into Baltimore or DC to get some good plants. I know Manor View in Northern Baltimore county has a great selection. http://www.manorview.com/

    I would suggest lyland cypresses for your fence, but they do get tall. Also, simply as manor view for an appropriate choice.

    Good luck.
  3. Meadowbrook

    Meadowbrook LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 467

    I would suggest using Leland Cypress' they (imo) are a better plant than arbs. Arbs are more readily available, and cheaper, but they have a downside. They attract bagworms (at least up here they do), they aren't very strong when it comes to snow, and they don't grow as large as Leland's do. I had used the Cypress' on a job a few months ago, and what they wanted was a fast growing, dense screen that stayed green all year. The Leland's grow to 30' tall by 15' wide when fully mature, which would make for one h#ll of a screen when done. Just my 2 cents, but hopefully it will help.


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