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We all need some peace and quiet in our own homes sometimes, but many of us may have distracting noises outside. Whether it’s from traffic, the airport, neighbors, businesses, or pedestrians, it can be really aggravating when we just want a little down time. Luckily, though, planting certain trees can reduce the noise and give you more privacy while also eliminating the need for you to build a wall that may look uninviting or out of place in your neighborhood. Let’s take a look at the seven best trees to block noise.
Some of the most highly recommended trees to block noise pollution are arborvitae trees.
These are excellent because they grow more quickly than many other trees, so planting these would cut down the length of time you’d have to spend listening to road noise. Depending on where you live, you can have a full-grown row of these in a year to two years. Two of the best varieties you can choose is the so-called “Degroot’s Spire,” which is high but not wide meaning you can plant a bunch closely together, or if you need something higher, the “Thuja Green Giant” can grow up to an impressive 40 feet. For best results, these should have at least a few hours of sunlight per day and they normally need a bit of pruning sometime in the Spring.
If you desire to have your yard look like an Italian villa while it blocks out the noise, Cypress trees may be a good option for you. Actual Italian Cypress trees may not be the best choice because they are very thin and you would need a lot of them to cover your yard, but there are other varieties that may be right for you. Leyland Cypress trees can reach 60 feet in height, and they grow well in most types of soil as long as they have full sunlight. They also grow very quickly, as most grow around four feet annually. Carolina Sapphire Cypress trees are also great for noise-blocking purposes, as they can grow up to 40 feet tall and require little to no maintenance. Cypress trees are also convenient options because they can thrive in drought conditions and without much water.
Another one of the most recommended types of trees for blocking out noise is evergreen trees. The southern magnolia tree is one of the top picks for this due to its impressive height but also its low-lying branches that can block out noise from the road better than some other trees. Best of all, the white blooms on southern magnolia trees are beautiful in the summer and can really add some life to your yard.
If you don’t need something super high, the Cherry Laurel evergreen tree may be best for your yard. While these normally grow to about 25 feet high, they are very dense trees and spread about twice as wide as it does high, therefore covering more ground. Cuban laurel trees are other evergreens that can drown out noise, and they can grow up to 65 feet tall. These have leathery, dark green leaves that drape over large, spread-out branches that provide a lot of coverage.
Holly trees are also great options if you’re looking for a sound barrier in your yard. American Holly trees are very common in the woods throughout North America, but they can also make great trees for your yard if you’re looking to obscure some of the external noise. The deep green leaves make your yard stand out, and the red berries that grow on them attract beautiful birds, especially in the Spring and Fall.
Most varieties of holly trees normally grow between one and two feet per year, so it may take some time for them to grow as high as you want them. If you’re planting several of these to block out noise, it is best to plant them in a staggered way to make sure all spaces are covered. You can also mix and match holly trees with holly shrubs to maximize coverage, including the Oakleaf holly and Dwarf Buford holly shrubs.
Don’t let the name fool you – the Eastern red cedar tree is actually a juniper tree and not a cedar tree. You’ve undoubtedly seen these before, as they are extremely common throughout the country. These make great noise barriers, as they can grow up to 40 feet high and grow to 20 feet in width, meaning just one tree can cover a lot of space. Birds love these trees, so expect to have some tweeting visitors if you grow them. Other than the Eastern red cedar tree, Chinese junipers and Rocky Mountain junipers can grow up to 30 feet and also act as great noise barriers. Juniper trees typically have long branches that spread wide and provide a lot of coverage overall.
Not only do Pittosporum trees have a really cool name, but they also make great noise barriers in yards. These trees are sometimes thought of as shrubs because they can remain very small or grow up to 50 feet in height, but shorter ones can make a great option for filling in empty spots between larger trees. Therefore, if your pittosporum doesn’t quite grow as high as others, it still provides great coverage and width. The blooms emit a great odor in the springtime, with certain variants blooming glossy white flowers and others blooming yellow flowers. Most of the flowers provide a citrusy scent without the odor being too strong or off-putting. These trees are extremely dense and can withstand harsh weather, making them great barriers to noise in your yard.
White Pine Trees
Like the Eastern red cedar tree, you’ve likely also seen several white pine trees throughout your life. The name is kind of deceptive, as these are actually green but can take on a hue of white as they mature. These are the most widespread trees in the U.S. and feature thick trunks that act as great sound barriers. They also have large cones on them, which act as more of an obstacle for noise. They can grow up to 80 feet tall and span up to 40 feet wide when they are fully mature. Wildlife such as rabbits and porcupines are attracted to these trees, and the trees also attract many beautiful birds including white mourning doves.
These Trees Are the Best at Blocking Road Noise
As you can see, there are many different trees available that you can plant to block out unwanted road noise. The key to success, however, is making sure the layout of your trees is sufficient and you can get the most use out of them. Landscaping experts typically agree that you need to have a couple of rows or at least stagger the trees diagonally so all areas are completely covered by them. If the trees are not providing you with as much noise blockage as you’d prefer, you can also try to add in some shrubs to fill in any blank spots. Overall, if you plant strategically, any of the trees mentioned above can successfully shut out unwanted noise in your yard and home. They will be well worth including the cost into your landscaping budget.