Paten Park Native Nursery - 57 Paten Road, Paten Park, The Gap, QLD 4061
Paten Park Native Nursery

Plants For Screening

Staff at the nursery are often asked about plants that would be suitable for screening. The type of screening, however, can vary and the best plants will depend upon the use required, the available width of garden and the amount of sunlight the plants will receive.

If the purpose is to simply hide an unsightly fence, there are several different options. Shrubs that are dense to the ground, such as many bottle brushes (e.g the red flowering Melaleuca viminalis or lavender flowering Melaleuca thymifolia), wattles such as the Brisbane wattle (Acacia fimbriata) or crowded leaf wattle (Acacia conferta) or hop bushes (Dodonea sp.) would be good in sunny positions. The palm lilies (Cordyline sp.) with their spectacular sprays of berries, or the hairy psychotria (Psychotria loniceroides) on the other hand like shady positions. Although these plants do not grow more than about 3 metres high, they (as with many other native species) can be pruned to provide the required height and width. If you like a more formal look then a hedge of lilly pilly (Syzygium smithii) with its white fluffy flowers and pink, edible fruit could be a good choice.
Where the garden space is narrow, there are other options. Wires can be strung horizontally along the fence for vines to be trained on. The wonga vine (Pandorea pandorana) with its clusters of pale pink flowers in winter and spring interspersed with the bower vine (Pandorea jasminoides) with darker pink flowers in spring and summer would rapidly cover a fence and provide an attractive vista. Other suitable native vines have edible fruit, such as the kangaroo vine (Cissus antarctica) with purple-black spherical fruit, or the climbing deeringia (Deeringia arborescens) with sprays of red currant-like fruit.
Another option for a narrow planting along a fence is to grow small trees that do not bear branches close to the ground such as the diamond-leafed pittosporum (Auranticarpa rhombifolia) or little kurrajong (Braychiton bidwillii) with an under-story of flax lilies (Dianella sp.), hoveas (Hovea sp.) or ferns such as the prickly rasp fern (Doodia aspera) or, in moist areas, the tussocking binung (Christella dentata)
Where space is not limiting and the purpose is to screen off the street or neighbours a great way to create the illusion of grandeur is a staggered height planting. Medium-large trees with an upright habit (for example the tulipwood, Harpullia pendula, or foambark, Jagera pseudorhus) can take up the background, followed by smaller trees (for example snow wood, Parachidendron pruniosum, or native daphne, Pittosporum undulatum). Shrubs (such as the glossy laurel, Cryptocarpa laevigata, or weeping baekea, Baekea frutescens) can then grade down to border plants such as tall sedge (Carex appressa), the smaller mat rushes (Lomandra laxa or Lomandra multiflora) or Brisbane lily (Priophys cunninghamii).
The staff are only too happy to advise you on plants suitable for your requirements from our extensive range. The nursery (57 Paten Road, The Gap) is open from 9am to 4pm Tuesday to Sunday.

Wonga Vine