The Q&A Archives: Resources on Windbreaks

Question: I am planning a windbreak across the front and side of my property. Would one row of trees be sufficient or would two be better? If two, how far apart should the rows be from each other? How far apart should the trees be from each other if they aresomething like a cottonless cottonwood? Are there any publications concerning the planning of windbreaks? Thanks for your help. Donna Landphear Downey, CA

Answer: It's great you are doing your research before planting your windbreak. A wonderful resource to help with your planning is Robert Kourik's book "Designing and Maintaining your Edible Landscape Naturally" (Metamorphic Press, Santa Rosa, CA, 1986). The book shows you how to calculate planting distances and the heights required. It even offers suggestions for creating a quick-growing windbreak along with a slower-growing, more permanent one, so you won't have to wait years and years before the windbreak becomes effective. Your local extension office may have a publication on constructing windbreaks -- windbreaks are used extensively on farms and orchards to protect crops. Their number is 213/744-4854.

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