Proximity to neighbors often means a lack of privacy, especially visual privacy. Various landscaping solutions offer the ability to remedy this, even in winter, to avoid installing a window treatment just to hide.
Posted yesterday at 12:00 pm
During the last twenty years, new buildings have been built on smaller and smaller plots. “The advent of row houses has created greater proximity, so people are looking for privacy,” says Marc Lacasse, real estate broker and president of the Association professionnelle des courtiers immobiliers du Québec (APCIQ). “If I show you a house and when you go outside you feel like you are in the neighbor’s house, you may not want to buy it or you will think about the additional costs necessary to be more isolated,” he continues, adding that the purchase offer could then be reduced to cover these costs, which therefore has an impact on the value of the property.
According to him, people who buy in winter do not fail to check that the patio is private so that they can enjoy it quietly in summer.
For some, the total privacy of the garden is an essential criterion. This is also the case for those who own an animal. “More and more people have dogs or chickens, which requires a fenced-in yard,” says Mr. Lacasse, who recommends not forgetting to get permission from your city and condominium, if necessary, before making exterior modifications, including plants , since these developments are subject to regulations.
Constructed or vegetal screen?
There are many possibilities to hide from the neighborhood or to visually eliminate an element that bothers us. “The choice always depends on the objective; that is what will determine whether to go more towards plants or towards something that is built”, specifies Jocelyn Lussier, landscape architect, horticulturist and president of Topia.
Screens, built more or less high, have the advantage of instantly creating privacy and their impact in width is limited. Therefore, they are ideal for small plots, as well as for balconies or terraces, and they come in different styles in wood, composite material or metal.
You can also place climbing plants on a trellis or blind wall that the wires stretch across, especially if you don’t have a lot of space.
Jocelyn Lussier, landscape architect, horticulturist and president of Topia
“Grapevine, wisteria, Boston ivy all do great, and even if they lose their leaves in winter, their twisted branches will form a gorgeous structure over the years,” he adds.
plants that grow tall
In recent years, the landscaper has noticed a proliferation of new varieties to hide in height, width or both, depending on the needs. “Some grow tall without becoming very large, which avoids taking up too much space in a small space. Several can be planted together to form an erect group. »
Conifers steal the limelight in winter as they retain their needles or foliage. This is the case of the famous cedar (commonly called cedar in Canada), whose shades of green, textures and dimensions differ depending on the variety. “You can play with several varieties to create contrasts. For example, combining “Yellow Ribbon” cedars, junipers [genévriers] and fir gives magnificent mixes of colours, volumes and textures in all seasons”, says Jocelyn Lussier.
Many conifers can grow very tall and still be narrow. Among the juniper family, some grow upright, while others grow mostly wide, like the Rocky Mountain juniper.
Columned oaks are perfect for hiding from direct view of a neighbor’s house or camouflaging an unsightly feature like an electrical pole.
Window with a view… to the neighbors
If the large glass openings promote beautiful natural light in the house, they also reveal its interior. Planting an evergreen tree, which will grow tall and dense enough, helps maintain privacy.
This is the case of the “Crimson Spire” oak, whose orange-violet foliage is splendid in autumn, and the pyramidal “Blue Heaven” juniper, whose sky-blue foliage is very showy. Finally, berry trees, such as the “Fairview” juniper, add a very nice poetic touch.
Good to know
Dense plants, such as a cedar hedge, reduce noise. Therefore, they contribute to both visual and sound tranquility.
While often small when purchased, trees grow quickly and it is important to learn how to prune them and how often to keep their shape.
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