A tree with a vigorous growth rate and large width and height makes for an ideal natural fence among the landscape. They fill in the garden in no time and create a striking landscape presence. Grown in masses along a driveway or lining a backyard to create a makeshift windbreak, evergreen trees make ideal screening plants because of their year-round foliage.
Giant arborvitae (Thuja plicata) is a rapidly growing evergreen tree that grows best in USDA zones 5 to 8. It grows 50 to 80 feet tall and has a width of 15 to 20 feet, creating an ideal natural fence along the landscape. Giant arborvitae has a pyramidal shape that is narrow to broad and deep green foliage with white markings on the underneath side of each leaf. As an evergreen tree, giant arborvitae retains their foliage and color throughout the winter to ensure the natural fence remains vibrant year-round. Giant arborvitae is a long-lived tree that casts dense shade among the landscape. It grows best in full sun to part shade and moist, well-drained soil. Giant arborvitae tolerates clay soils.
Scepter holly (Ilex x 'Scepter') is a variety of evergreen tree that has a vigorous growth rate and an upright, pyramidal form. They grow 20 feet tall and have a spread of 12 to 15 feet wide. The glossy dark green leaves on scepter holly are leather-like, and the bright red berries emerge in fall and last into winter. Scepter holly trees grow best in full sun to light shade and well-drained soil. Plant scepter holly trees in USDA zones 7 to 8.
Eastern poplar (Populus deltoides) is a deciduous tree with a rapid growth rate. It grows 75 to 100 feet tall and has a spread of 50 to 75 feet wide, creating a tall and wide natural fence. The green 3- to 5-inch-wide leaves on eastern popular trees have a toothed edging around the perimeter of each leaf. Easy to transplant, eastern poplar trees have a pyramidal shape when young that matures to a broad, open vase shape. Eastern popular trees grow best in full sun and tolerate a wide range of soil varieties. It is both air-pollution tolerant and drought tolerant. Easter popular grows best in USDA zones 2 to 9.
Leyland cypress (x Cupressocyparis leylandii) is an evergreen tree with an upright, pyramidal shape and blue to green needles that remain on the tree year-round. It grows 60 to 90 feet tall and 12 to 15 feet wide, making for an ideal screening plant. Easy to transplant, Leyland cypress trees grow best in full sun and well-drained soil. Plant Leyland cypress in USDA zones 6 to 10.