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Fast Growing Perennial (or self-sowing) windbreak plant?  RSS feed

 
Hilde Alden
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The main long stretch of my large garden runs along the lane and is subject to prevailing winds and unsightly traffic. I have planted small shrubs all along the lane but they are very small plants now and it will be some years before they will grow into an effective wind/view break. Also, they need protection from deer in the form of attractive browsing plants.
Initially i had planned to grow Jerusalem artichoke in a strip next to (but not shading) the shrubs, as J.A is a good browse distraction for deer, provides food, grows vigorously and early in the year, and self seeds. However, I have gotten a great deal of warning that jersulam artichoke is too successful (zone 7/8, pacific northwest) and will take over the area and be impossible to get out!
So I am looking for plants that will have the same properties as JA, without the problem. Any ideas?
 
Peter Ellis
Posts: 1432
Location: Central New Jersey
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This is one of those entertaining bits of calculus. Balancing what you want against what you do not want, where the desired trait(s) tend to run strongly with undesired traits.

Personally, I would go with the Jerusalem artichokes and expect to "trim the hedge" now and then. The deer will help you with that, you will harvest some to eat yourself. Multiple yields, stacked functions, possibility of some work above and beyond to keep them from over expanding.

Seems to me likely that anything that will give you the rapid growth you are seeking is going to have a risk of over growing it's intended area. In the nature of hardy fast growing plants...
 
Noni Schmidt
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Location: The Big Mitten
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I so much want to grow jerusalem artichokes; I love them but am unable to locate them commercially as once I could. I suspect (hope!) that is what's growing along the edge of my son's yards. The plants look exactly like leaves and blossoms in pictures I've found online, but I'm going to have to wait till fall then to dig down and find tubers eh?
 
Dave Lodge
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Location: New England
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Switchgrass might be good.
 
Landon Sunrich
pollinator
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Location: Western Washington
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Hops. A couple good vigorous hop plants and a few posts and wires for them to climb. they'll grow as tall and thick as you want um.
 
Landon Sunrich
pollinator
Posts: 1703
Location: Western Washington
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Sunflowers might also be handy. They grow very similarly to sunchokes. Hops will climb both of them with enthusiasm.
 
Josey Hains
Posts: 92
Location: AB, Canada, Zone 3
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Here one of the best shrubs for windbreak that fast growing is carragana. Ours are getting really tall (if you let them) and you can't kill them.
 
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