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Can Trees Reduce Noise Pollution?


trees blocking sound

Have you ever experienced noise pollution? Whether you live close to a street or are in a closely-built neighborhood, you may have some unwelcome noise that you’d like to remedy for the human ear. Below is a list of the best trees to block sound and an explanation of how trees reduce noise pollution.

Plants are the perfect antidote to noise pollution and sound absorption, and of course, they offer many other benefits. These include increasing home value, reducing air pollution, and beautifying your landscape. In order to boost the noise-reducing benefits of trees, you’ll need to choose ones that feature thick, dense foliage and that can be planted closely together. You need a year round noise reduction fence planted close to the area.


Why sound barrier trees planted along the roads reduce noise?

The University of Tennessee Agricultural Extension Service suggests that planting two or three rows of sound absorbing plants can effectively reduce noise levels by more than seven decibels! According to SF Gate, “the ideal noise barrier hedge is dense and tall enough that you can’t easily see through or over it. The effect is bolstered by planting vegetation in multiple rows and multiple tiers, such as an overstory of tall trees, an understory of tangled shrubs, and a ground cover. Read more about landscaping around trees.

You can enhance your noise barrier even more by first installing an earthen berm of several feet, then planting atop and around it.”

Wondering which plants would work best as noise reducers? Here are some of our top picks.


Noise Reducing Plants:

oak leaf holly noise reducing
Oak leaf holly gives a great textural appearance in any landscape.

Oakleaf Holly:

Looking for a stunningly beautiful tall hedge to help block noise sources? The Oakleaf Holly is an elegant hybrid holly featuring a tall, pyramidal form. Its foliage is distinctive and charmingly similar in shape to that of an oak, and unlike many other hollies, the Oakleaf will set red berries without needing a pollenizer.  As the tree reaches maturity, the lower branches lose their vertical turgidity, giving the mature tree a pyramid shape.


dwarf burford holly
Your Dwarf Burford Holly hedge will take a few years to establish and grow up to 8 feet tall. Space them accordingly.

Dwarf Buford Holly:

This handsome shrub features an attractive and dense growth habit that makes for a lush addition to your yard while still being low maintenance. The thick foliage will help sound block when planted as a hedge and will also add a distinguished feel to any landscape. Bonus: birds love to come eat the Dwarf Buford’s red berries in the winter! More plants with red berries.


indian hawthorne flowers
The pink flowers of the Indian Hawthorn attract birds, bees, and butterflies to your landscape.

Indian Hawthorn:

The Indian Hawthorn’s glossy, dark green foliage makes an excellent noise-reducing low hedge. As beautiful as it is useful, this unique shrub is well known for its beautifully decorative flowers, glossy evergreen foliage, and naturally rounded shape. It grows clusters of fragrant pink white blossoms intermittently from spring through summer that are followed by dark, bluish-black berries that persist through winter.


Noise Reducing Trees:

italian cypress fence
Leyland is of the most dense evergreen tree to create a living privacy fence.

Leyland Cypress:

One of the most popular noise-reducing trees, the Leyland Cypress will become a tight, dense barrier for view, absorbs sound or wind reduction when planted as a hedge. A very fast growing tree, the Leyland Cypress grows 2 to 3 feet annually, reaching 40 to 60 feet at full maturity when planted in full sun. It’s bright emerald green foliage remains striking year-round and is soft to the touch. It grows very densely, maintaining its slender, conical shape naturally. A belt of trees is the best sound reduction with cypress trees.


cryptoermia hedge
Cryptomeria is an excellent choice for landscapers across the United States as it can grow in USDA zones 5-9.

Cryptomeria Radicans

The Radicans’ habit is tall and slender, and it offers year-round beauty as a privacy screen that helps surrounding noise reduction. It is a quick grower, reaching 12 to 16 feet tall within 5 years of planting. Eventually, this fast grower can get up to 40 feet in height and 20 feet wide at full maturity.

This handsome growing evergreen tree features foliage that is exceptionally dense, dark green and feathery, therefore offering good contrast to its blue-leafed evergreens. The large leaves give it the appearance of a Christmas tree.


Planting privacy trees in your outdoor living space provide an attractive and versatile way to decrease sound and traffic noise levels. We prefer them over wooden fences because of their home-improving appeal. Noise reduction landscaping is economical and the best way to improve your peace of mind and the environment! Another great tip is to add a water feature with a circulating pump to create white noise.

Want to chat more about finding the right trees to block sound waves for your landscape? Contact us or leave a message in the comments, we’d love to help!

What trees do you have planted to help reduce sound?

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