Shrubs, Grasses, ??? - Knowledgebase Question

Dryden, Mi
Avatar for plhill31
Question by plhill31
March 26, 2010
Plants that will camouflage air conditioner but not block air flow? Conditioner located in half moon planting area by patio.

Answer from NGA
March 26, 2010
If the fan on your air conditioner is on top, you won't have to worry about hot air being blown onto your plants; if it vents out the side or front, you may have difficulty finding plants able to withstand the blasts of hot air. If you impede air flow, your AC unit will work harder, which will cost you more in energy bills. Three feet should be a minimum when planting anything to hide the unit. If it vents out the top, a small fence or trellis on which your grow a well behaved vine will work, providing you keep the vines at least 3' away from the unit. Or you could plant an evergreen shrub such as nandina or barberry to hid the unit. If the unit vents out the sides or front, I don't think there are any plants that would endure the blasts of hot air. In this case, I'd build a pony wall at least 4' away from the unit, and plant in front of the wall. Good luck with your project.

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