What's the best low maintenance shrub for screening?

"I live in Tampa Florida and would like advice on a very low maintenance shrub/hedge to act as a screening from neighbourly homes. It is a half acre corner lot with a 5 ft wood fence all around which I would like to eventually eliminate or at least hide. Considered viburnum - Love the look, but understand it is high maintenance. Cypress - Low maintenance but understand it grows up to 50 ft. Your advise would be greatly appreciated. Thank you, Vicki"
Submitted by BHGPhotoContest

Hi, Vicki. I love Viburnums. I've grown them in my own yard and tended them in my former bosses' gardens for more than 15 years, and I've never considered them high maintenance. I do a little pruning once a year and that's about it. If you'll still consider Viburnums, look at the Rusty Blackhaw (V. rufidulum) and Sandankwa (V. suspensum). You might also consider Camellias (C. species), Marlberry (Ardisia species), and Glossy Abelia (A. x grandiflora). I can also recommend a couple of sites to search for more ideas. Try our plant finder within BHG.com's Plant Encyclopedia. You can choose detailed search and select the criteria you're looking for within your hardiness zone. You might also try the FloridaYards.org website. They've got a plant finder as well.

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