This is a "warning" post. I had planted a row of these about 4 years ago, with the intention of blocking out the neighbor behind us. Our 6 foot privacy fence, on a slope, was only about 5 feet in reality. True to their information, they do grow extremely fast and provide excellent privacy. Within 3 years they were about 15 feet tall.
Unfortunately, we spent last summer trying to exterminate them. The roots are VERY invasive. I found a
root up against our above ground pool, and my pool means much more to me than privacy. I didn't need roots poking up through the vinyl liner.
The way we got rid of them was to cut them down, and then spend the entire summer applying TORDON stump killer to the shoots. There were shoots everywhere, even 15 feet up into the yard, in every direction. The drought we had last year was a blessing in disguise for us, because it helped in preventing more roots, since they like water. Tordon works fantastically in immediately killing the shoot.
So, if you like these and want to plant, I would suggest you do it out on the back 40 where it won't bother anything.
I used vinyl floor tiles (12 X 12) for wall behind stove and microwave. They are very easy to keep clean. I did use extra contractors glue on the backs of them to make sure they wouldn't fall off with the heat and moisture.
Total project was about $60.00. ($17.00 for the Primer, $20.00 for the Countertop Coating and $20.00 for the Polycrylic). I already owned the paint, but that was about $15.00 worth. I know they sell kits for this kindof thing (made by Gianni or Rustoleum), but I wanted to go with a different paint scheme. I got the original idea from a blog (creative Kristi's) Total process took about 3 days