Landscape design for privacy and noise reduction

Written by Resident Expert, Shane Kingsbury, Inspired Exteriors

Have you ever thought of your garden as your sanctuary, a place to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life? Our garden is a space that should feel warm, inviting, and safe. A space which we could spend hours in, that fosters family connection, enjoyment and special memories with our loved ones.

Our clients often ask us, “how can we increase our privacy?” and “what can we do to make our garden a quieter space?”.

Creating private and enjoyable outdoor spaces is desired by most home owners. A well-designed landscape can transform a garden into a peaceful retreat, shielding you from nosy neighbours and intrusive noise. We’re here to explore various techniques for using landscaping to achieve privacy and noise reduction, ensuring your outdoor areas are as tranquil, secluded and as beautiful as possible.

Planting Strategically

One of the most natural and environmentally friendly ways to enhance privacy, and reduce noise in your landscape, is through strategic planting. This includes hedging, dense foliage, and layered shrub planting which act as visual and sound barriers. Consider evergreen varieties such as Magnolia, Waterhousea, Lilly Pilly or Viburnum, which provide year-round coverage and absorb sound effectively. Perhaps you have a window needing informal privacy, but also needs some Winter sun, a deciduous tree like an Ornamental Pear is a great option!

For a more structured approach, layer different types of plants together. Use taller trees and shrubs at the back, with smaller shrubs and perennials in front. This not only creates a thick, lush barrier, but also adds depth and interest to your garden design. Side note: Be careful when it comes to bamboo, although it gives a lush tropical look, it can also be challenging to maintain, and to remove in the years to come.

Landscape design for privacy and noise reduction

Savvy Screening

Privacy screens are another effective solution for creating secluded outdoor spaces, and they can come in all shapes and sizes. From metal to timber, perforated to louvered - the options are seemingly endless, with a shape, colour and style to suit any garden.

Screening can be integrated in a number of ways to enhance privacy as well as offer functional and aesthetic benefits. For example, a secluded nook in your garden, whether it’s a veggie patch or a relaxation spot, can be made more intimate with the addition of a privacy screen. Screening certain sections of your garden, such as along the boundary or beside your outdoor living and dining space, can help you and your family feel more comfortable within your garden and home.

You can even try a simple fence topper. These can be installed on top of your boundary fence, to further increase its height. They come in a range of materials to match the existing fence, such as COLORBOND® steel, treated pine and lattice.

Landscape design for privacy and noise reduction
Landscape design for privacy and noise reduction
Outdoor Areas

Designated Spaces

You know that phrase, "a slice of paradise"? Well wouldn’t it be great if you could have a few slices all to yourself? By properly planning and zoning your outdoor spaces, you can achieve areas that feel connected, whilst also offering privacy and seclusion.

Dividing your garden into distinct zones can help manage privacy and noise. Create different areas for lounging, dining, and playing, using natural barriers or structures to separate them. For instance, a pergola or arbour with climbing plants, like Jasmine or Bougainvillea can delineate a dining area, while a row of hedges, like Buxus, might separate a children’s play space from the rest of the garden.

Modifying landforms by using different levels or terracing is also great way to manage sound and create a sense of seclusion. Raised decks, sunken fire pits and retaining walls can create cosy private spaces.

Landscape design for privacy and noise reduction
Landscape design for privacy and noise reduction

Water as a Feature

There is something special about water, it soothes and calms us. It helps us relax and resets our senses. Landscape architects and designers use water, particularly water features, to enhance this effect.

They also serve as excellent distractions from outside noise. The sound of flowing water from fountains, waterfalls, or streams can help drown out the obnoxious sound of traffic and other background noise, creating a more peaceful environment. Additionally, water features can be designed to fit any garden style, from modern minimalist to lush and natural. There’s always an opportunity to incorporate one in any garden.

Pro tip: Ensure the water feature includes a spout or falling/running water for constant water movement to keep those pesky mozzies away!

Landscape design for privacy and noise reduction

With thoughtful planning and strategic landscaping, your garden can become a peaceful oasis that’s uniquely yours. These techniques not only enhance privacy and reduce noise, but also add beauty and value to your property.

Get in touch with Shane from Inspired Exteriors to help create your private, quiet oasis!

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