9 Privacy Trees for Texas Gardens & Landscapes

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Home » Texas » 9 Privacy Trees for Texas Gardens & Landscapes

Privacy trees are a must for homeowners that want to block out an ugly brick wall next door or create a secret oasis in your yard.

Because Texas USDA Hardiness zones go from 7a to 10b, there are so many species of trees that can grow in Texas.

Keep reading to see nine excellent privacy trees that thrive in Texas.

9 Privacy Trees For Security & Noise Reduction in Texas

1. Bodark (Maclura pomifera)

Bodark tree
Image by Chris Light via Wikimedia Commons (CC 4.0)

Bodark trees are native to Texas, particularly in the northeast, and grow throughout the southeastern U.S.. These trees thrive in wet climates and are well-adapted to the thick clay soil of these regions.

Bodark trees have been planted as privacy trees for many centuries in the southern U.S. because their canopies are very thick and their branches are thorny.

This made Bodark trees perfect for keeping livestock in a field and keeping predators out.

Of course, they can be planted as privacy trees even if you don’t have livestock.

These trees would especially be great if you live on a large piece of land where there could be predator animals around.

But even if you just want to block out the neighbor’s house, Bodark’s thick crown will do just that!

Additionally, their beautiful orange-brown bark and yellow fall foliage are also great reasons to grow these trees!

  • Other Common Names: Osage-Orange, Bois-D’arc, Bodark, Hedge-Apple
  • Growing Zones: 4 – 9
  • Average Size at Maturity: 40-60 ft tall by 40-45 ft wide
  • Season: Flowers in late spring

Available at: Nature Hills (Thornless Option)

2. Yaupon (Ilex vomitoria)

Image by Urban Forestry via Flickr

Yaupon trees are also native to Texas and grow in the floodplains and wet woodlands of southeast TX.

These trees can be easily spotted in the fall and winter when their bright red berries are fresh and covering the tree.

However, Yaupon is also commonly grown as a hedge in landscaping. Yaupon is a type of Holly, so it has that thick canopy and dark green leaves typical of Holly trees.

Yaupon is a small tree but it grows in a wide-spreading, bushy form. This lends it towards being pruned into a hedge and it can be formed into a thick fence when planted in a line with others.

Plus, Yaupon is an evergreen tree so this natural fence will stay thick and green all year long.

A single Yaupon tree is thick but won’t work so well for privacy as will several Yaupon trees planted together.

  • Other Common Names: Yaupon Holly, Cassina
  • Growing Zones: 7-9
  • Average Size at Maturity: 10-20 ft tall by 8-12 ft wide
  • Season: Fall and Winter

Available at: Fast-Growing-Trees & Nature Hills (Dwarf Options)

3. Leyland Cypress (Cupressus × leylandii)

Leyland Cypress
Image by Roger Eavis via Flickr

The Leyland Cypress is possibly one of the most common trees grown for hedges and natural privacy fences.

The majority of those thick, dense, fluffy green walls you see around neighborhoods are likely Leyland Cypress trees.

These trees have an incredibly dense crown that doesn’t let anything through, not even birds!

Their leaves are thin and flat but grow so tightly and profusely that their crown becomes an impenetrable green fortress.

Plus, Cypress trees are super easy to care for and maintain. They can grow in full or partial sun and are adaptable to different soil types.

While they can grow in all of Texas, they grow best in zones 6 to 8, which covers most of central TX.

And they grow super fast! They’re known to reach their mature height within a few years, so you can have a full and thick hedge very quickly.

Great for privacy, noise reduction and much more.

  • Other Common Names: Leylandii
  • Growing Zones: 6-10
  • Average Size at Maturity: 40-60 ft tall by 20-25 ft wide

Available at: Fast-Growing-Trees & Nature Hills

4. Loblolly Pine Tree (Pinus taeda)

Loblolly Pine - 2 Square - 800 x 450 - LYRAE
Images by Lyrae Willis, Own Work, for Tree Vitalize

Loblolly Pine is a variety of Pine tree that is super common in the south. It grows best in clay or loamy soil but it can grow all over the state.

As a native member of this ecosystem, Loblolly Pines are known to be home to lots of wildlife and attract lots of butterflies when they’re in bloom!

Along with being a common wild species, these Pines are often grown for landscaping as well. These privacy trees are super tall and grow very fast, so they reach their mature height very quickly.

This makes them ideal if you want a natural fence that goes very high, since a line of these trees can be like a fortress wall! Or, you can also simply grow one or two.

These trees have a beautiful, open canopy of bright green leaves that pop against their dark brown bark. Plus, their flowers have a sweet fragrance when they blossom.

  • Other Common Names: Oldfield Pine, Bull Pine, Rosemary Pine
  • Growing Zones: 6-9
  • Average Size at Maturity: 60-90 ft tall by 25-35 ft wide

Available at: Nature Hills

5. Jerusalem Thorn (Parkinsonia aculeata)

Jerusalem thorn tree
Image by Bill Morrow via Flickr

Jerusalem Thorn trees are loved and grown for many reasons. They’re amazing flowering trees that blossom with golden yellow flowers, their young twigs are bright green, and their seeds are edible!

These trees are very common in southern TX, both found in the wild and grown for landscaping.

They’re most often found around the Rio Grande area because they thrive in wet soils, but they can grow up to Dallas!

These are medium-sized trees so they can grow in most yards or gardens. Their canopy is wide and open and their branches hang down like those on Willow trees.

The twigs and leaves are bright green throughout the Spring and Summer.

In late Spring or mid-Summer Jerusalem Thorn trees are covered in vibrant yellow-orange flowers with long, droopy petals.

Their canopy is thick but anyways, anyone trying to peek into your yard will be distracted by these mesmerizing flowers!

  • Other Common Names: Retama, Paloverde, Horsebean, Lluvia de Oro
  • Growing Zones: 8-11
  • Average Size at Maturity: 15-20 ft tall by 20-25 ft wide
  • Season: Summer

6. Cockspur Hawthorn (Crataegus crus-galli L.)

If you’d like a fruit tree that doubles as a privacy tree, consider Cockspur Hawthorn trees.

They’re not your standard fruit tree but they produce edible fruits that ripen in the summer and could work great as a privacy tree in an edible garden.

Although these trees are medium-sized, growing to about 30 feet tall, their branches hang down low, making their canopy spread wide.

In this way, their canopy covers lots of space and essentially creates a large block.

Plus, their branches are covered in thorns that will help to keep animals out of the garden!

Cockspur Hawthorn is another deciduous tree, with green leaves throughout the Summer that turn red-orange and scarlet in the fall.

In the Spring these trees are covered in white cup-shaped flowers.

These flowers are profuse and engulf the tree’s canopy in white, but only for about one week before they drop!

  • Other Common Names: Cockspur Thorn, Newcastle Hawthorn, Newcastle Thorn, Hogapple
  • Growing Zones: 4-7
  • Average Size at Maturity: 25-35 ft tall by 25-35 ft wide
  • Season: Spring, May

7. Lawson Cypress (Chamaecyparis lawsoniana)

Lawson Cypress
Image by Wendy Cutler via Flickr

Similar to the Leyland Cypress described earlier in this article, Lawson Cypress trees have a super dense crown of green leaves that basically forms a wall.

However, the main difference between Leyland and Lawson Cypresses is that these trees can grow over 150 feet tall!

So, these trees are less ideal for hedges- unless you want a 200 foot hedge- but they form more of a wall.

Especially so if you plant several trees next to each other and create a line.

Keep in mind, though, that Lawson Cypress trees don’t grow very fast, so it will take years for them to reach this incredible height.

It’s also nice that, regardless of their height, these privacy trees don’t have much of a trunk. Their thick crown starts fairly low to the ground and stretches all the way to the top.

There are many varieties of Lawson Cypress, including some dwarf versions, with different sizes and color foliage.

  • Other Common Names: Port Orford Cedar
  • Growing Zones: 5-8
  • Average Size at Maturity: 150-200 ft tall by 20-25 ft wide
  • Season: Spring

8. Eastern Wahoo (Euonymus atropurpureus var. ‘atropurpureus’)

Eastern wahoo
Image by Andrew Cannizzaro via Flickr

Eastern Wahoo trees are super popular for landscaping because of their ornamental flowers and leaves, but they also work as privacy trees!

They’re quite small so they’re often either grown as a small tree or pruned into a bush.

These trees are really low maintenance so you can easily grow several in a row for a hedge.

They can even grow in full shade, so they can be planted along a side of your fence where other trees would struggle.

In late Spring, Eastern Wahoo blooms with tiny dark purple flowers that grow in large clusters all over the canopy of the tree.

Following these flowers are their seed pods, which are light pink-purple then darken to also be crimson red.

Eastern Wahoo trees have dense canopies, which is why they’re often pruned into hedges.

When planted together, a line of Eastern Wahoo trees can form a thick natural fence.

  • Other Common Names: Burning Bush, Wahoo, Waahoo, Spindle Tree
  • Growing Zones: 3-7
  • Average Size at Maturity: 12-20 ft tall by 15-25 ft wide
  • Season: Spring and Summer

9. Witch Hazel (Hamamelis virginiana)

witch hazel flowering
Image by Gailhampshire via Flickr

Witch Hazel trees are also small trees that are often pruned into hedges or to be more bush-like.

These trees are most commonly planted in landscaping for their bright, beautiful flowers but they work equally well as privacy trees!

When growing in the wild, Witch Hazel trees grow in a wide, shrubby form that’s very dense.

Imagine if you plant several of these next to each other, no one is getting through that!

Whether you’d like to physically keep things out or just want to keep people from peering in, the Witch Hazel canopy is thick enough to do the job.

Plus, then you get to enjoy vibrant and fragrant yellow flowers that cover Witch Hazels.

These flowers bloom all along the branches and have stringy petals that hang down. Interestingly, Witch Hazel flowers bloom in late Fall, long after most flowers are gone.

  • Other Common Names: Virginian Witch Hazel, American Witch Hazel, Snapping Hazel Nut, Spotted Alder, Winter Bloom
  • Growing Zones: 3-8
  • Average Size at Maturity: 15-20 ft tall by 15-20 ft wide
  • Season: Fall to Winter

Available at: Nature Hills

Comparing Texas Privacy Tree Varieties

VarietyDescriptionGrowing ZonesAverage Size at Maturity
BodarkKnown for its thick, thorny branches and dense canopy, making it ideal for privacy and as a natural barrier.4-940-60 ft tall x 40-45 ft wide
YauponEvergreen, providing year-long privacy, and features bright red berries in fall and winter.7-910-20 ft tall x 8-12 ft wide
Leyland CypressCommonly used for hedges due to its dense, fluffy green wall-like foliage.6-1040-60 ft tall x 20-25 ft wide
Loblolly Pine TreeFeatures a beautiful open canopy of bright green leaves and sweet-smelling flowers.6-960-90 ft tall x 25-35 ft wide
Jerusalem ThornMedium-sized tree with wide-spreading, drooping branches and bright green twigs and leaves.8-1115-20 ft tall x 20-25 ft wide
Cockspur HawthornMedium-sized tree with drooping branches, forming a wide canopy. Features thorny branches for added security.4-725-35 ft tall x 25-35 ft wide
Lawson CypressKnown for its dense foliage, forming a wall-like structure.5-8150-200 ft tall x 20-25 ft wide
Eastern WahooFeatures dense canopies, ideal for creating thick natural fences.3-712-20 ft tall x 15-25 ft wide
Witch HazelKnown for vibrant and fragrant yellow flowers that bloom in late fall.3-815-20 ft tall x 15-20 ft wide

Enjoy Your Privacy!

As nice as it is to have neighborhood barbecues, we all need some alone time sometimes.

Those are the times when it’s nice to have your private space and to know that you’ll be unbothered. Thankfully, one of the above Texas privacy trees can provide this for us!

If you don’t have a nearby forest that you can get lost in, you might as well create a little one in your own yard.

Whether you want to grow super tall Pines to make you feel like you’re in a forest or decide to plant a row of thick, bushy Yaupon, you have a wide variety of trees you can plant to create a space that’s your own.

There are, of course, tons more trees than what I listed here that you could grow for privacy trees.

Pine and Fir trees are great options for tall and bushy trees and then you have tons of options for small trees that are thick and dense.

The options are limitless, it’s just a matter of what you’re needing in your space!

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Peyton Warmack-Chipman

Environmental Politics & Permaculture Enthusiast

Peyton considers trees not just as plants that provide shade or yummy fruits, but as necessary for a healthy life and community. Peyton has done most of her research on environmental politics, but recently has shifted her focus towards actual agricultural practices, learning about ideas like agroforestry, food forests, and permaculture gardening. She's most often in the kitchen whipping something up, but otherwise can be found on long bike rides or doing research.

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