Arborvitae/Fence Question??

Hi All,
Here is a question which I hope is simple for someone to answer? When planting arborvitaes near a wooden stockade fence, how far back from the fence should you plant the arborvitaes if you want to leave room for trimming the arborvitaes, maintaining the fence, raking leaves behind the arborvitaes, etc, etc.
On the property line with our neighbors, we have a 6 foot high stockade fence running all the way down the property line, In the Spring, we would like to plant some arborvitaes all the way down the fence line, for some added privacy.
I know that you don't want to plant the arborvitaes right up against the fence, because what if you need to paint the fence, fix the fence, trim the arborvitaes, etc, etc, so what is a good distance to plant them from the fence?? 1 or 2 feet away?? 3 or 4 feet away??
Thanks!
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We are probably going to plant either the "Emerald Green" or "Dark Green" variety of arborvitaes. The "Emeralds" say to plant 2-3 feet apart, and the "Dark Greens" say to plant 3-4 feet apart. So is this how far back they should be planted back from the fence as well??
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On Jan 6, 10:06 am, snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (MICHELLE H.) wrote:

A quick google of: arborvitae emerald green spread yielded one estimate of the spread of a mature specimen at four feet. Half that is two feet. Figure out how much space you'll need for fence maintenance, etc., and add two feet.
I might like three feet for maintenance (because I'm clumsy and have a big butt), so the center of your planting hole might want to be five feet from the fence. You might get away with a little less; you can squish backward into the arborvitae while you paint your fence.
Arborvitae require little or no pruning; that's one of their best features.
Cindy Hamilton
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I planted mine about 2 feet away from the PVC fence and so far no problems. That was 5 years ago when they were 3 feet tall. Most of them are about 8 feet tall today. However, as far as planting one next to each other, I spaced them out 3 feet to make them look evenly spaced out and it looks nice.
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What type of Arborvitaes do you have in your yard, the "Emerald Green" ones?? Yeah, I have read that if you want the solid Green wall for privacy that the "Emerald Green" should be planted no more than 3 feet apart, and the "Dark Green" no more than 4-5 feet apart, even though I would probably still plant the "Dark Green" 3-4 feet apart so that you have that nice Green privacy wall.
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On Jan 6, 9:06 am, snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (MICHELLE H.) wrote:

So the dark green grows 4ft wide, You need 3-4 ft space to paint so I would plant it 5-6ft back
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At least half the expected spread but be aware that most likely they die back on the fence side for lack of light at least as high as the fence.
These are nice low maintenance plant but that is a weakness they share with many others.
BTW, trimming is rarely necessary. Cleaning up their droppings is.
Colbyt
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I have a long row of them along my back yard with a 6 foot wood fence on the border. The trees are planted about 3 or 4 feet from the property line. They're about 32 years old. They now touch the fence. Everything was fine until a stupid new neighbor moved into the house behind us. For some unknown idiotic reason, they installed their own wood fence right behind ours. The light level has dropped a lot and the trees are thinning.
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