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which plant(s) to use for a privacy fence

Hi all

As you can see from the picture I have a split garden that has a view in/out of the downstairs bedroom flat and I want to add some privacy for us both but naturally with flowers or plants so as not to close her in.  I am looking for any advice on what could be planted please. 


My vision:  Thinking of about 5/6ft in height not to be too thick so all light is blocked out, to have colour for as much of the year as possible and if possible to smell.  Low maintenance would also be preferred. With my limited knowledge am initially thinking honeysuckle because that does smell wonderful.  Someone else mentioned wisteria which does look stunning in blue but doing research this seems to be more of a tree! I am open to ideas.

Now for the details.  I started digging to see what soil I have and it is clay based so I have now dug out 15 rubble bags of clay soil and hit concrete!!  My thinking was to fill this all with fresh soil and then to plant a few things.  Is this a good idea? Will this concrete prove to be a problem?  Assuming this could have an effect in type of plant(s) I could use.  The space is north facing and because I have high foliage on the east side it is not in direct sunshine but does get some in the early morning.  By midday the sun is blocked and by the late afternoon the sun has disappeared behind the houses


The dimensions of my new hole is 190 cm in length and I have dug down 50 cm till I hit the concrete.  From wall to wood is 75 cm. 

I hope this helps and I look forward to hearing your ideas. 

Many thanks 



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  • FireFire Posts: 18,054
    edited April 2018
    I would go for a vigorous, shade loving, group one clematis on a trellis,  over a honeysuckle.  It seems that Golden Bamboo could be invasive, no?
    I think wisteria can take a while to establish and may need more space for the roots. What does your neighbour think about it?
  • Thanks Freddies Dad.  i have thought about Bamboo but have also read a lot about how this potentially can get out of control so i don't want to take any risks.

    Fire - i like your idea.  i have found some blue angel clematis which dolook colourful and :|

    now i need to build a trellis that is not a fence so that is next weekends job  :)

    will keep you all posted

  • hogweedhogweed Posts: 4,053
    It is only some bamboos that are invasive and only if they have a free root run. The OP is planting into a brick planter so it would be contained. 
    'Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement' - Helen Keller
  • BrugmanBrugman Posts: 6
    Black bamboo great...yellow after a few years is abit of a thug.
    Best surrounded by concrete or brick.
  • FireFire Posts: 18,054
    The RHS link above suggests that Golden can be invasive, esp next to lawn.
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  • NollieNollie Posts: 7,478
    I would add a good layer of gravel at the bottom to aid drainage, then mix in lots of compost and rotted manure in with your clay soil - maybe keeping about a third of the original soil as it’s good nutritious stuff. Plants always seem to do better than in just pure compost, for me at any rate. A clumping bamboo form would be ok I would think?
    Mountainous Northern Catalunya, Spain. Hot summers, cold winters.
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