10 Fast Growing Windbreak Shrubs [Identification and Care]

10 Fast Growing Windbreak Shrubs

One of the effective ways to protect your property against strong wind, reduce energy consumption during heat, and cold periods is to grow windbreak shrubs.

Windbreak‘ is one of the factors you need to consider before you move into a new home — especially a new location you aren’t familiar with the climatic changes.

According to research by PennState Extension, it was found that planting windbreak shrubs in the house helps to reduce winter heating bills by 15%, while summer cooling bills by 75%.

Windbreak shrubs are not only cultivated to reduce the impact of wind but also to increase the beauty of landscape.

Most people find it difficult to identify fast-growing windbreak shrubs and how to care for plants. You don’t need to worry because this write-up contains the important information that’ll guide you to grow effective windbreak shrubs.

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Here are 10 fast growing windbreak shrubs:

1. Green Rocket Hybrid Cedar

| Plant Gardener


Green rocket hybrid cedar grows over 5 feet per growing season. The growth rate increases when planted in well-drained and rich nutrient soil.

Hardly will the foliage drop on the ground. Foliage remains all year round, which makes the base very clean unlike deciduous plants.

The plant produces a wide distance fragrance especially during summers. 

Green Rocket Hybrid Cedar plant grows over 25 feet tall and 10 feet wide when it matures.

The plant has a center stalk with horizontal branches. It uses the branches to shed ice and snow load well. 

The branches are what it uses to reduce the velocity of wind,while the stalk prevents erosion.

How To Identify Green Rocket Hybrid Cedar

It has an upright pyramidal rocket shape. With narrow serrated leaves that grow upward. 

The leaves are deep lustrous green during summer and turn to bronzing in winter.

You can also identify it with soft foliage (similar to an arborvitae), but not prickly like some pines and spruce trees. 

Read Also:- Azaleas bush: Planting, Growing plant, and caring your favorite shrub 

How To Care For Green Rocket Hybrid Cedar

At the tender growing stage, Green Rocket Hybrid Cedar requires full sunlight to florish. 

Even though the plant is drought resistant, you need to cultivate it under well-drained and highly moist soil.

Trimming helps the plant to remain healthy and take any shape of your choice. Also, it enables the plant to grow string branches that can withstand strong breeze.

They require at least 2 times watering per day to enable it to germinate fast and grow into maturity stage.

You can repot or transplant it during spring and summer. Apply organic matter if the soil is not rich in nutrients.

Scientific NameThuja Plicata x Standishii
Size (When fully matured)25 – 65 feet tall, 6 – 10 feet wide
Sun ExposureFull/partial sunlight 
wateryModerate watering at the early stage
Type Of SoilLoamy, clay, and sandy soil
Soil pH6.0 – 7.5
Bloom Time Early spring
FlowerNo flower
Zone 2 – 7

2. Hackberry (Celtis Occidentalis) 

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Hackberry is a fast growing windbreak shrub that has the capacity to reduce the impact of wind. The growth rate ranges from 5 – 10 cm based on how rich-nutrients the soil is.

It’s not just planted to reduce the impact of windbreak, but it’s highly tolerant to air pollution which blows sand and some other air elements.

Hackberry is a deciduous plant that changes along with climate change. During summers the plant gets rid of leaves, while in early spring it grows new and refreshing leaves.

Hackberries do well in poor soil. It can easily adapt to all kinds of soil like sandy, loamy, and clay. 

Upon its maturity the Hackberry can reach over 60 feet. The width of the plant ranges from 60 cm to 90 cm.

Not only does the Hackberry withstand strong winds, it is also tolerant to air pollution. Hardly will die as a result of its tolerance to air pollution.

How To Identify Hackberry

Hackberry leaves are shaped like spearheads with a small toothed edge on the top half.

The fruits appear dark red. It’s a berry-like fruit, which appears during summer and turns dark purple in the fall. 

How To Care For Hackberry

At the early stage, Hackberry needs water to develop roots. Once the roots are established, the plant can survive and withstand any weather conditions. Water Hackberry at least once in a day.

When planted well-drained soil and moisture, apply nitrogen fertilizer 5.6.5 to enable the plant to get more nutrients. 

Hackberry needs full sunlight to develop foliage and to absorb nutrients from the soil. Therefore, provide the plant full sunlight at every growing stage until it matures.

When planting Hackberry to block the wind, select a sunny location, as they do best in full sun.

Scientific NameCeltis Occidentalis
Size (When fully matured)60 feet tall, 60 – 90 cm wide
Sun ExposureFull sunlight
wateryEnough watering at the early stage
Type Of SoilLoamy, clay, and sandy soil
Soil pH6.0 – 7.5
Bloom Time Early spring
FlowerNo flower fruits
Zone 3 – 8

3. Blue Spruce (Picea pungens)

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Blue Spruce shrubs require less or no maintenance when it has fully established. 

The plant is also known as Colorado Spruce. Most people cultivate Blue Spruce because of the strength to reduce the impact of wind on property. 

Blue Spruce is an expression of beauty that you can have at the center of your landscape. 

Weather conditions don’t affect the foliage of the plant once it is established. 

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How To Identify Blue Spruce

Blue spruce doesn’t produce flowers. It has silvery-blue foliage of pyramid or cone shape. 

Blue Spruce maintains the same color of leaves all year round. Trim it to assume pyramid shape. Untrimmed Blue Spruce becomes dense down.

The height of Blue Spruce is 75 – 80 feet and 10 – 25 feet wide upon maturity. The plant grows straight with horizontal branches that withstand any windbreak.

Scientific NamePicea pungens
Size (When fully matured)75 – 80 feet high, and 10 – 25 feet wide
Sun ExposureFull sun
Type Of SoilAcidic; loamy; moist; rich; sandy; well-drained; clay
Soil pH6.0 – 7.5
Bloom Time All season growth.
FlowerNo flower, silvery-blue foliage
Zone 2 – 7

4. Coral Snap

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The growth rate per season of Coral Snap ranges from 12 – 14 feet.

Coral Snap produces brown flowers. The flowers don’t stay for more than one season. Once the flowers fall off, the plant has enough energy to grow tall and expand.

When planted in row, the plants have much power to reduce the impact of wind. 

The plant changes colors as the weather conditions or the planting season changes. During summer the color changes from yellow to orange, while in winter it changes from orange to red.

Coral Snap loses its leaves during late fall. Deciduous plant with high capacity to withstand drought and frost.


How To Identify Coral Snap 

It has delicate flowers that are like bell shapes that are wider than the leaves. 

The flowers make it easy for people to identify them.

Coral Snap has a good fragrance with wide range coverage. The perfume is unique to the plant. Fragrance is mainly the identity the plant possesses.  

How To Identify Coral Snap

It’s a perennial plant that survives under harsh weather conditions. It needs full sunlight to grow.

It blossoms when planted under well-drained and moist soil. Ensure the soil is rich in nutrients especially when it is at the tender stage.

It requires much water during the early stage to develop fibrous roots. It has a center tap root which is used to absorb nutrients especially during summer.

Once the flowers fall off, trim off the stalk to enable the leaves to gain more energy to form very well. It also gives the entire plant enough energy to grow.

Scientific NameAntirrhinum majus
Size (When fully matured)20 – 35 feet high, and 10 – 20 feet wide
Sun ExposureFull sun
Type Of SoilLoamy, well-drained rich nutrient and moist soil. 
Soil pH6.0 – 7.0
Bloom Time Late spring and early summer
FlowerBell-shape flowers. Yellow, orage, and red
Zone 3 – 8

Read Also:- Can You Plant Perennials in Raised Beds? (What You Should Know)

5. Dogwood (Cornus spp.)

Soil doesn’t affect the growth rate of Dogwood shrubs. But lack of nutrients is what delays the growth rate.

 is one of the fastest growing plants. Its growth rate ranges from 15 – 20 irrespective of the soil.

The plant is effective in wind protection and also to control erosion. It used to increase the landscape value especially during winter.

Dogwood branches color during spring is grey, while bright red in summer.

Dogwood shrubs produce blooming flowers that florish in spring then thrive during summers. The flowers have different colors which range from bright red to yellow. 

The plant thrives in poor soil and florish in well-drained rich nutrient soil. It grows under full and partial sunlight. 

Read Also:- 10 Perennial Ground Cover Plants [#4 Is Easy To Maintain]

How To Identify Dogwood 

Dogwood doesn’t have leaves but flowers. The flowers are brownish, red, pink, and yellow. It gets rid of flowers during summer to grow them back early spring.

The Dogwood plant is known to be a dense shrub with many branches from the base. The plant looks lifeless when there are no flowers.

The stems are brownish and grey. The stem color varies from one species to another. 

Dogwood requires pruning off the dead branches for new branches to spring up. Ensure the soil is rich in nutrients and well-drained before pruning off the dead branches. 

Scientific NameCornus spp
Size (When fully matured)20 – 50 feet high, and 10 – 15 feet wide
Sun ExposureFull sun
Type Of SoilPoor soil 
Soil pH6.0 – 7.5
Bloom Time Spring time
FlowerYello, pink, and red flowers
Zone 2 – 8

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6. Rosemary Salix

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Rosemary Salix has considerable height, which makes it a perfect shrub for reducing wind velocity. 

When planted in rows, it reduces the impact of wind and offers maximum protection of property against wind.

Rosemary Salix stem changes colors as weather conditions change. It turns deep purple or brown during winter and brownish during summer.

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How To Identify Rosemary Salix

Rosemary Salix leaves are silver in color. The leaves maintain the same color all years 

The leaves are dark-green in Summer, then yellow in Autumn. The leaves appear to be dead during summer but much much alive.

Rosemary Salix grows up to 10 to 20 feet tall and 5 cm wide. Highly dense shrub that doesn’t require any trimming. 

It thrives in well-drained soil but requires moderate watering. Highly drought tolerant plant that has the capacity to withstand wind.

Scientific NameSalix elaeagnos subsp
Size (When fully matured)10 – 30 feet high, and 5 cm wide
Sun ExposureFull sun
wateryThrives in wet soil. Moderate watering
Type Of SoilClay, Loamy, Sandy
Soil pH6.0 – 7.5
Bloom Time All year round
Zone 4 – 7

Read Also:- 10 Perennials For Clay Soil (+ Soil Preparation)

7. Mugo Pine (Pinus mugo) 

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Mugo Pine height makes it suitable to reduce the velocity of wind against foundational hedge plants and highly effective in control of erosion.

It’s an eye-catching shrub that most people use to increase the beauty of their landscape. 

Mugo Pine flowers are reddish and purplish monoecious. It grows glossy leaves that are cone-like after the flowers.

Mugo Pine is a drought-tolerant evergreen shrub plant with flowers. The shape of the plant is usually a cone or pyramid. 

Mugo Pine will hardly grow tall above 5 feet but it can be trimmed to grow wide up to 20 feet. 

Mugo Pine can grow in any soil irrespective of the amount of nutrients it has. It thrives in poor rich soil.

Read Also:- Are Caladiums Perennials? (+ How To Grow Them)

How To Identify Mugo Pine

Mugo Pine is 5 feet tall and dense to the ground. It has cone shaped foliage that looks like a flower. It has serrated leave that makes it unique and more beautiful 

Mugo Pine is an evergreen plant that doesn’t change color irrespective of the weather conditions. 

Scientific NamePinus mugo cultivars
Size (When fully matured)3 – 5 feet tall, 5 – 10 feet wide
Sun ExposureFull/partial sunlight 
wateryThrives in wet soil. Moderate watering
Type Of SoilLoamy, clay, and sandy soil 
Soil pH6.0 – 7.5
Bloom Time No flowering
Zone 2 – 7

Read Also:- Are Ferns Perennials? (Yes, here’s why)

8. Bowling Ball Arborvitae (Thuja occidentalis)

OE | Plant Gardener

Bowling Ball Arborvitae is a coniferous shrub, which you can use to protect low hedge plants from getting damaged by winter wind.

It’s used to protect foundational planting against the velocity of wind.

An average height shrub that you can use to add lasting expression to your landscape. It’s a dense down shrub that you can use to control weeds.

Bowling Ball Arborvitae has deep green foliage. The foliage is all year round blooming, which makes the plants able to withstand any winter wind.

It uses the foliage to shed ice and snow. The foliage requires no pruning before it grows into pyramid shape. 

Most people plant the shrub because its height enables you to view your compound from far distant.

Read Also:- 10 Red Perennials To Grow in Your Garden

How To Care For Bowling Ball Arborvitae

This shrub requires full sunlight to blossom. To maintain a healthy state ensure you water it every day at the early stage of its growth.

Plant it in well-drained, moisture, and rich soil. Add organic matter to the soil if you want to speed up the growth rate.

During extreme heat, increase the number and quantity of water you supply on a daily basis.

The plant is not drought tolerant. So, you need to double the mode of watering if you want the plant to survive.

Pruning is not necessary to keep the plant healthy. However you can prune to get any desired shape of your choice. 

You can successfully grow this plant in zone 1 to 7. The plant doesn’t protect any object that’s tall against wind.

When planted in well-drained rich nutrient soil, the plant grows up to 3 – 5 feet tall, 60 – 90 cm wide upon maturity.

Scientific NameThuja occidentalis
Size (When fully matured)3 – 5 feet tall, 60 – 90 cm wide
Sun ExposureFull sunlight 
wateryAt least once in a week
Type Of SoilLoamy, clay, and sandy soil
Zone 1 – 7

9. Elderberry

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Elderberry shrub is cultivated for multiple purposes. It provides protection from severe wind that comes during winter and also for edible purposes. 

Many other people cultivate elderberries to attract pollinators. Birds always visit any garden that hasElderberry shrub. If you need a bird in your garden, then plant Elderberry.

Elderberry is a deciduous plant with horizontal branches that it uses to shed off ice and snow.

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How To Care For Elderberry 

Elderberries can tolerate different conditions. It thrives in poor soil and over wet soil aso.

Elderberries don’t have the capacity and energy to tolerate drought. During drought you need to provide enough water but not to over wet the soil.

The plant does well when planted in well-drained, loamy soil. You can also cultivate it in well improved sandy soils — add at 5 – 10 cm organic matter.

Elderberry care starts from the planting stage. Don’t plant elderberries during summer, but early spring.

Scientific NameSambucus
Size (When fully matured)3 – 8 feet tall, 5 – 10 feet wide
Sun ExposureFull/partial sunlight 
wateryModerate watering at the early stage
Type Of SoilLoamy, clay, and sandy soil
Bloom Time Early spring
FlowerPink, brownish
Zone 2 – 8

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10. Lilac (Syringa vulgaris)

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Lilac is a deciduous shrub that grows fast, which you can use to reduce the effect of wind.

In every season, Lilac growth rate ranges from 3 – 5 feet. When planted in well-drained soil, the growth rate increases.

Lilac can easily adapt to any soil but is not tolerant to drought. It needs full sunlight to blossom. 

Pruning helps the plant to increase in size and become more healthy. At the early stage, prune it to remove dead branches.

Lilacs produce pink and purple flowers. During summer the flowers fall down, while the leaves streak with light yellow. This mainly occurs during hot weather conditions. 

Having Lalic in your landscape makes it an expression of beauty. It’s an eye-catching flower with rosse.

Scientific NameSyringa vulgaris
Size (When fully matured)5 – 10 feet tall, 2 – 5 feet wide
Sun ExposureFull sunlight 
Type Of SoilLoamy, clay, and sandy soil
FlowerPink, brownish
Zone 2 – 7


Discover the power of fast-growing windbreak shrubs at PlantGardener! Unveil nature’s defense against harsh winds with our comprehensive guide. From selecting the ideal shrubs to nurturing their growth, learn how to create an effective and aesthetically pleasing windbreak for your outdoor space. Elevate your gardening expertise with insights on plant varieties, care tips, and the environmental benefits of windbreaks. Whether you’re shielding a garden or enhancing your landscape, PlantGardener’s guide empowers you to harness the full potential of these resilient and swift-growing shrubs. Explore the secrets to a wind-resistant paradise and fortify your green sanctuary today! 🌿

Read Also:- Are Morning Glories Perennials? (Or Annuals)?


These fast growing windbreak shrubs are carefully selected that suit every soil type. They have the capacity to withstand drought and still reduce the impact of wind.

They are not just for protection against wind, but some of the plants are edible and use to increase the landscape value.

Read Also:- Are Hibiscus Perennials? (+ Growth Tips & Care)


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