Asked on Nov 16, 2017

Repeat, Condo on 3rd floor, N. Facing patio needs privacy

by Rr
I own the condo. HOA does not want shades or lattice since my patio faces the street. Plants seem to be okay. I live alone and want 1. privacy. 2 to not view apartments across street. The ficus are beautiful. I am petite and dragging the big trees to my bathroom to water thoroughly is too much for my back. (I had back surgery) I even used a dolly. Too much for me.

Can anyone think of something pretty? I love the trees, but need to make this 5x8 patio look appealing, at least to me. Fake trees? Gotta be something cool.
The cement is stained. I had a outdoor carpet on it, but pulled it up. Looks like I need to put a KilZ? or sealer on it. I will put a pull up flooring. Like synthetic large "tile or planks" that are used in showers. Nothing permanent.

I just I want a simple and pretty view from my front-room looking at my patio. Sorry this is a repeat. I had to take pic and did not know how to update my initial question. Thanks for any input.
I do not get a lot of sun, so that is why I am limited to low sun plants.

q repeat condo on 3rd floor n facing patio needs privacy
Patio floor is 5x8. I had a small table for my older grandkids to sit out and eat lunch, but I am trying to minimize the look for my small patio.
q repeat condo on 3rd floor n facing patio needs privacy
  22 answers
  • Linda Beam Linda Beam on Nov 16, 2017

    • Rr Rr on Nov 16, 2017
      Thanks for your suggestion. I have watered the trees for years. they get real dusty, canyons all over my area. if I don't get the trees to my shower every few months, they get mites and bugs. they also get root bound quickly. so a good shower keeps theses growing. no shades. curtain rods, or trellus' allowed. maybe a different plant ? I need to figure out how to treat the cement before I put semi-permanent, airy IKEA outdoor tiles on the cement.

  • Bob Bob on Nov 16, 2017
    Try lattice work with climbers . BTW HOA ?

    • See 1 previous
    • Bob Bob on Nov 16, 2017
      Thanks Nicole, I`m afraid American acronisms totally confuse the rest of the world . It`s a lot worse for those who`s English is not their first tongue .

  • Nicole Sauve Nicole Sauve on Nov 16, 2017
    "HOA does not want shades" what about outdoor drapes that are somewhat sheer. I like real Ivy HOWEVER; spiders tend to love it too and Ivy grows like crazy. What about clear shower curtains that you can create yourself with permanent markers? Good luck with your project!

  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Nov 16, 2017
    Are you allowed to hang rods,shade sails would work for you

  • KDinFL KDinFL on Nov 16, 2017
    What about hanging outdoor curtains/sheers that you can pull back during the day and close off for privacy?

  • Jen O. Jen O. on Nov 16, 2017
    How about a removable frosting you can put on the sliders? We have an office here that had glass on one side of the door and the person in the office wanted privacy, so we used frosted glass tiles to cover the glass which worked nicely. You can use them on the sliders without losing light and they can be removed if you ever move. Also if you didn't want to lose the look of the outside entirely you could use them on the bottom half of the sliders. Just a thought ;)

    • See 1 previous
    • Jen O. Jen O. on Nov 19, 2017
      I totally understand. I live where we have an HOA as well. That’s a tough one, I hope you find a solution

  • M. M.. M. M.. on Nov 18, 2017
    Can you have some planters/window box size(long and narrow) that hang on the railings, either on the inside or out? Then you could plant hanging plants to become a curtain. Otherwise, long narrow planter boxes could be put against the railings and you could grow tall shrubs, grasses or even climbing plants for a curtain of greenery.

    • Rr Rr on Nov 18, 2017
      Thank you. I did think of this and still am trying to figure out a different option. Maybe no plants. I had fake trees from Michael's at one time. I just had to take those lightweight trees into the shower to get the dust off every month. They still looked fake. I will keep thinking on this one.

  • Kmo4149175 Kmo4149175 on Nov 18, 2017
    Can you attach a small thin board to the ceiling? If so add some screw hooks to the board and tie fishing line on it. Plant a couple morning Glory plants in small pots and let them climb the fishing line. It's pretty and it will die back when it gets cold (not sure what your Winters are like in CA but they can be brutal here in NY). That way you get the privacy of a vine plant that can be easily removed but won't take up a lot of space. And the fishing line won't be visible to anyone but you.

    • See 2 previous
    • Kkr Kkr on Dec 30, 2017
      Fishing line will rot out & break if in direct sunlight. Not a long term solution.

  • Rr Rr on Nov 18, 2017
    Thanks! Wow. What a great plant zone map. I will look at vines.

  • You certainly have a dilemma. I get the not moving the trees, have had several back surgeries myself. I like Kmoriarity2's suggestion if you can somehow add cup hooks or eyebolts. Since your HOA is so strict, I would approach them to provide you with adequate privacy or a solution. See what they want to suggest? I have lived in an HOA and understand the rules and regs, and to maintain continuity as well as property value, but . . . there are limits, you are entitled to privacy.

  • Dor31777021 Dor31777021 on Nov 18, 2017
    Have some porcelian tile installed on the patio. Water will not hurt it or stain it. And buy a water hose that is a hand full and lets out to as long as you need like “as seen on tv” and hook it to your kitchen sink and drag to your patio, then you would not have to lift the heavy plants. Or put your plant In a pot on wheels and roll it in.

  • DebM DebM on Nov 19, 2017
    What about a tri-fold privacy screen that you can fold up and set against a wall or bring it inside when you're not out on the patio? Something like this

  • Nancy Nancy on Nov 19, 2017
    Is there a way to attach vertical rows of fishline? If so, use plants that climb to fill in the open space as the vines grow.

  • Itsmemic Itsmemic on Nov 19, 2017
    see if they will allow window film. Art Scapes...amazing stuff for light in...snoopers out.

  • Donna Donna on Nov 19, 2017
    The Ficus are absolutely BEAUTIFUL!
    Having lived with Condo rules but loving plants, I opted for the earlier suggestion of a hose attached to kitchen faucet and a spray bottle for the in-between dust removal on leaves & pest control. Yes, it IS a pain, but so worth the LIVING, green privacy screen.
    Also, to slow down the growth, u can lay the pot on it’s side, slide the plant out and cut it’s main tap root.
    Again, a pain, but it does slow the growth.
    Ficus roots naturally intertwine in won’t hurt the plant.

    • Rr Rr on Nov 20, 2017
      Thanks Donna. I also LOVE my ficus trees. They grow so fast.I have repoted them a few times. I would cut off a bunch from the bottom to remove rootbound. I do not know what a tap root is, but I will google it to find a pic. I have birds all around me. I live a block away from a massive canyon, and have tons of trees. The dust is always on the trees unless I drag them to my shower, on a dolly. It still is too much for my back. so I am looking for plan B.
      This has been a cool "tree house"condo for me. I love the greenery and plants in the only option I can see since I can't put up any type of shades.

  • Mogie Mogie on Nov 19, 2017
    Have you considered frosting the windows or getting something from Home Depot. They have different designs that mimic stained glass and are rolls of semi transparent material that just applies to the window itself. What about a curtain? Or semi transparent sheers?

  • Barbara Baldwin Barbara Baldwin on Nov 19, 2017
    Frost the glass door. Bring water to plants, not the other way around

  • Rr Rr on Nov 19, 2017

    That is a cute screen,but I don't think it would work... Whatever have has to blend in. Since all my windows face huge trees, my ficus seemed to blend in. I'll keep thinking on a plan. Fake trees seem to be the easiest. I had 2 fake, feet ficus from Michael's. They looked okay... and fake :(

  • Ellis Ellis on Nov 20, 2017
    Ikea sells deck tiles, called "Runnen." It looks like parquet flooring, can be put down and taken up easily. Home Depot also has a variety of deck tiles for sale.

  • Rr Rr on Nov 20, 2017
    I saw two types at Ikea. One looks or is actual bamboo. I will check Home Depo. Thanks !

  • Wanda Wanda on Nov 20, 2017
    What about bamboo beaded curtains? Hang them inside across your sliders. They look exactly the same on both sides. You can see out but have more privacy and at night you see the design on them. This is what I did before and after pics.

  • Kkr Kkr on Dec 30, 2017
    So the issue is that the plants need to be sprayed down to prevent dust & bugs? What about hooking a garden hose to your faucet or shower (they sell attachments that make this conversion possible) then getting a wand hose attachment? Sounds like you really do love the live trees & would like to find a way to make them work.