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Suggestions for 3 trees which would ‘go together’

Good morning
i have a long back garden of 120 feet, which is mainly lawn, with a couple of fruit trees at the far end
a designer has suggested a group of 3 trees together, about 4m away from the back door to add interest and block some views.
i would like evergreen (although he seems v keen on deciduous), but as i have limited physical ability , i would prefer less clean up.
Also as the trees would be near to the house i am a bit scared as years ago we had a problem with tree roots and foundations due to clay soil.
can anyone suggest 3 trees which might be good please?
I cant put a photo on as my better half doesnt believe in putting things like that online.
many thanks



  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 48,932
    4 metres is pretty tight. Are you sure you want that?  :/
    No 'tree' is going to stay particularly small too, not without  regular pruning. 
    Often - you don't need anything so near to block a view either. We often get asked about trees on boundaries to block views, but the easy answer is to plant smaller and nearer because of perspective. 
    It's a bit difficult without a photo though, or at least an idea of what you're trying to block. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • AnniDAnniD South West UKPosts: 10,992
    edited October 2020
    Although the designer has suggested it, you don't have to take it as gospel.  :)  
    As @Fairygirl says, it seems pretty tight to me as well. There are other ways of breaking up/ blocking views such as pergolas etc. although without a photo it does make things a bit more difficult. 
    If you are at all worried, l would politely decline and ask him if he can suggest something else. A good designer should be able to do that.
    He may be an expert in his field, but it's your garden and you are the ones who have to live with and maintain it.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 48,932
    Interestingly - as you say @AnniD, when I'm out walking round here, there's a house which has a screen in the front garden. It's a fairly typical detached house, and the garden isn't very long, but there's flats across the road, so not the most attractive view ion the world. They've done a simple trellis screen just coming round one half of the garden, down at the boundary, and you can still see the front door and the driveway side, but it will block the view from what I assume is their 'front room'. It has climbers on it, and the framework of branches is still there just now after it all dying back.

    I also have a screen, which provides a bit of privacy, with climbers etc, and it's a feature in itself through winter. Mine is at right angles to the back of the house as that end borders the road  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • Thanks for the thoughts on this. I wonder 2 more things, do root barriers work? And also if i had a hedge near the border instead, say a privet, would that harm the neighbours would be about 3 metres away.
  • AnniDAnniD South West UKPosts: 10,992
    I haven't any experience of root barriers so can't comment on that, but l think l'm right in saying that privet should be okay. Bear in mind it might not be totally evergreen (depending on the weather).
    More information here that may be of help in your decision making
  • Thanks Anni D. I appreciate it. The reason i thought privet was because i went on southern waters website and they said you can plant privet directly over a drain and it wont harm it, so that maybe the way to go.

  • We have Azara serrata planted in clay soil. It is everygreen and has scented flowers in the winter/spring. It has been in the growund now for some 8 years and is about 3m high with a spread likewise.
    It is a nice shrub.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 48,932
    Privet certainly isn't deep rooted, so I'd expect that would be ok. Bear in mind though, that it gets very big if left unpruned and trimmed   :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • Thanks fairy girl and everyone. So, my better half just braved the rain to measure where the designer said to put the trees.
    we both agree that 3 is definitely pushing it, so have decided to go for privet hedge along the boundary (bit boring but safe on foundations) plus 1 tree, maybe in a rootbag, where the man said. 
    I mistakenly thought it was 4 metres from the house , but it is 10 metres (😊).
    Bertrand mentioned a shrub, the azara serrata ( keep singing acuma matata now!). It looks lovely. Do you good people think this on another kind of evergreen shrub-Into- tree type thing might be safe please?
    sorry for all the knowledge, ability, health and money i am afraid.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 48,932
    10 metres is fine  :)
    In that case, I'd suggest something we often go for on the forum, and that's Amelanchier lamarkii. Very easy, flowers in spring, berries and foliage colour in autumn. Can be pruned as a multi stemmed shrub [which it really is] or grown as a small trees.  :)
    I hadn't heard of Azarra, but looking at info, it probably wouldn't survive here  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

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