Best Plant for Privacy
Answered by: Conrad Richter
Question from: Nancy Thiessen
Posted on: March 25, 2004

I’m glad Richters offers this forum to ask particular questions.

My family has enjoyed your catalogue for years. Thank you. My question is, before I order seeds this year, I’d like to know which plant is best for my dilemma. I have lattice attached to my porch for me to grow a plant for privacy from my neighbor, and I have two plants in question that your catalogue provides. First is the regular or japanese hops. I understand it reaches up to 20 feet and it is a perennial. How fast does it grow? How long would it take to grow 15 feet? I’d like immediate as possible coverage. I live in St. Catharines, Ontario and I believe I am in the hardiness zone of 5. Does the hops plant stay with foliage all year through because this is what I would prefer?

Regular hops (Humulus lupulus) and japanese hops (Humulus japonicus) are different. The latter is an annual so it needs to be replanted each year. The former is a hardy perennial that will come back each year from the ground. Neither will not reach its full height until well into the latter part of the summer. And when the killing frosts arrive in fall the leaves will fall. This may not be what you want for privacy.

The other plant is the Butterfly Pea, and being an annual I assume it would reach the height it suggests of 20 or so feet in one season. I realize it would not provide year round coverage however.

Butterfly pea is like the japanese hops: it needs to be planted each year, and will only provide privacy in the latter part of the summer.

If you could get back to me with answers, I would be grateful. Thanks. Don’t change anything with the catalogue layout by the way.

Thank you for the feedback on the catalogue!

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