New To Gardening-Looking for fast, lush, privacy, pet safe tree - Knowledgebase Question

Richmond, Vi
Question by jbarnhardt23
March 4, 2010
Hello, I am located in Richmond VA where the temperatures range from 30's in the winter to 90's in the summer. We are looking for a fast growing lush tree to use as privacy from the house that sits directly behind us. We are open to any suggestions and do not know where to begin. What do you suggest and what is the best care to ensure optimal growing. We also need pet friendly. Thank you!

Answer from NGA
March 4, 2010


Some of the fastest growing, maintenance free shrubs and trees you can plant are Virginia natives. These are well adapted to the growing conditions and as such should establish and grow well without any extra preparation or ongoing care. Consider planting Cercis canadensis (Eastern Redbud), Magnolia virginiana (Swamp Magnolia), Myrica cerifera (Southern Bayberry), Quercus phellos (Willow Oak),
Rhododendron maximum (Rosebay Rhododendron), Clethra alnifolia (Sweet Pepperbush), and Ilex verticillata 'Winter Berry' (Winter Berry Holly). You might also consider
Morella cerifera (wax myrtle) which is a 12 to 20' shrub, fast growing, sun (over 6 hours of sun daily) to part shade, with fragrant foliage. Hope this short list is helpful.

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