Planting for privacy - Knowledgebase Question

Taylors, So
Question by igottabeme19
September 6, 2010
We are having our wedding in our backyard next October (of 2011). I would like to plant something along the fence that will be at least fence-height by then. Part of the fence is in sun, and part in shade. We have a SMALL budget!! We are in Upstate South Carolina. Can you recommend some inexpensive ornamental grass or shrubs that would be suitable, and might even be colorful by next October?


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Answer from NGA
September 6, 2010

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If you plant buddleia (butterfly bush), Kerria, Abelia, Deutzia 'Kolmaspri', and Viburnum dentatum 'Christom' now, they will be from 4-6' tall by this time next year. You can fill in around them with daylilies, peonies, phlox and chrysanthemums and you should have a colorful garden, perfect for a wedding. If you're interested in ornamental grasses, Big Bluestem (Andropogon gerardii, is a very tall native grass grows from 3 to 8 feet tall in a narrow clump. The leaves are blue-green in summer, turning rust in fall. It needs full sun and prefers moist to average soil but is very drought tolerant once established. Or, plant Hairgrass (Muhlenbergia capillaris). It's gorgeous - clouds of tiny flowers form a pinkish-purple haze appearing in October and fading to tan through the winter on this showy native grass. Clumps of very fine, blue-green to gray-green foliage rise to 2 to 3 feet tall. Full sun, extremely drought tolerant once established.

Hope these suggestions are helpful.

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