Shade plants for the west wall?

Discussion in 'Designing, building, making and powering your life' started by SandGroper, Mar 17, 2007.

  1. SandGroper

    SandGroper New Member

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    G'day all

    I live in a small villa in Perth which has large floor to ceiling windows exposed to the west. We've had the usual stinking hot summer with quite a few days over 40 degrees. I'd like to get something to grow to shade the side of the building, I'm thinking of a "wall" of plants about 2-3m high with dense foliage.

    The garden bed on that side of the building is about 5m long and 2m wide. I've had some people advise me that Lillypilly is a good idea for it. Any other ideas would be very much appreciated.

    In case you're wondering... I bought the place because it's close to the beach!
     
  2. hedwig

    hedwig Junior Member

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    don't know much about the climate in Perth, how about grape vines?
     
  3. Tezza

    Tezza Junior Member

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    Before u plant anything,THINK Do you want to totally loos the veiw you presently enjoy?

    If you do..You could plant decideous vines as in grapes, or some beutifull decidous trees like liquid amber or the many sexy foilage trees now available Imagine the veiw in Autum with setting sun setting down over the ocean..

    Hey call me up Id like to see your veiw too


    Tezza
     
  4. Plumtree

    Plumtree Junior Member

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    Why not buy some roller blinds that you can roll up or down when needed? With blinds you have complete control so that you can enjoy the warmth provided by the winter sun. Exterior blinds are effective as well. Trees are a great idea but will take a 'lifetime' of growth to be really effective. They will have to be quite substantial trees to block the sun because of the angle of the sunlight. Even a grapevine will take 2 to 3 years to grow to any size on a trellis. :cry:
     
  5. bill

    bill Junior Member

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    What about a Rottnest Island Pine (Callitris preissii)? It is adapted to coastal areas and thus isn't going to worry about airborne salt from your nearby beach or the crappy sand you no doubt have. It is an upright shrub that grows to 6m. Nice soft foliage but it isn't decidious, so you will lose your view.

    Do not plant a lillypilly if you only have 2m width as the canopy will extend well beyond that and you will be forever pruning (they grow quick though). I like the roller shutter idea myself but if you are sold on a tree it will have to be very contained. I think even a liquid amber is going to exceed 2m width. Chillean Pencil Willows might do it. Vines have their own set of problems but can look (and feel) lovely. I think the non-fruiting grape vines will cover a trellis in half the time of a fruiting vine so they may be an option.

    There are quite a few conifers that will do the trick. There has been some sort of fungus in Perth for the last decade or so that takes out conifers. I have seen a lovely conifer hedge destroyed because every 2nd plant died. for that reason I am wary of conifers. The Rottnest Island Pine isn't a conifer but looks like one.

    Having written all this - if I was doing it I would look at putting a non-fruiting ornamental grape vine on a trellis. They are lovely, don't attract ants, will give shade without loss of view, and let the sun through in winter. Failing that have a look at the rottnest island pine.
     
  6. Jez

    Jez Junior Member

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    Build a 2-3m deep shade house with 80% shade cloth onto that end of the house across the windows - and the northern side if you suffer similar problems.

    Plant it out with a range of low-light plants (and there are edibles which fall into this category) which are nice to look out onto (make the best aesthetic use of that window you can), cover the outer side of the shadehouse with a vine (which you then aren't totally reliant on for shade as you would be if you just used that with no shade house) - the end result will be a pleasantly altered micro-climate which you may even like to utilise as an outdoor area for summertime.

    In a solar passive design with a well insulated structure, I'd just recommend planting, because ideally you'd want some Western sun in winter months, but to be perfectly blunt, you're dealing with a major architectural flaw with your current design...that sort of flaw calls for a radical solution if you want to solve the problem.
     
  7. bill

    bill Junior Member

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    Jez is correct - a shadehouse would be the duck's nuts. I retract my earlier advice and slap my forehead for not thinking of it.
     
  8. greeny

    greeny Junior Member

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    I think I would use kiwifruit there.
     
  9. Ev

    Ev Junior Member

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    I hung shadecloth of the eeves, dropped the temp of the brickwall quite nicely, I would like to build a nice weld mesh trellace out from the roof maybe 3M one day when I have the cash though.

    As for plants just a caution avoid having plants or moisture near your house(
     

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