When space permits, we like to screen views with a mixed evergreen planting, rather than a boring arborvitae hedge. Here’s a list of favorite evergreen trees in more compact sizes. All prefer full sun and grow 10’-20’ unless otherwise noted.
- Abies koreana – Korean Fir
- Chamaecyparis nootkatensis ‘Pendula’ – Weeping Alaskan Falsecypress – elegant upright leader with weeping branches; tolerates some light shade
- Chamaecyparis obtusa ‘Filicoides’ & taller C. pisifera cultivars – unusual, thread-like foliage texture in green and gold
- Pinus flexilis ‘Vanderwulf’s Pyramid’ – Limber Pine – Soft, airy texture to the white-ribbed needles.
- Pinus cembra ‘Glauca’ – Swiss Stone Pine
- Picea orientalis ‘Skylands’ – Oriental Spruce – Sexy! Gold needles and purple new cones.
- Picea pungens ‘Montgomery’ – Blue Spruce – Classic blue color in a compact size
- Picea abies ‘Acrocona’ – Dwarf Norway spruce
- Sciadopitys verticillata – Umbrella Pine – thick, shiny needles, grows slowly to 30’
- Thuja (arborvitae) – Still has its place. Good for filling in space inexpensively while other plants grow in; remove when others reach mature size.
Need more ideas? Missouri Botanic Garden’s Plant Finder is a great resource for researching plants or developing a plant list based on specific criteria (form, height, sun/shade, hardiness zone, etc.).