How to Create a Privacy Screen for a Deck

A natural extension of the home, decks not only add character to your yard but also allow you to enjoy the great outdoors at the same time.
However, if the neighbors are too close or there's too much traffic noise from the street, spending time on your deck can be more stressful than relaxing. One of the fastest way to add privacy to your deck is to erect a bamboo or willow fence. The natural materials blend seamlessly with the outdoors and can transform your deck into a secluded and restful retreat. .

Step 1

Assess the area of the deck to be screened. For example, screen only the side that's visible from the road, and leave the view of the yard unobstructed. Check sight lines from the driveway and neighboring houses to decide where privacy screening is needed.

Step 2

Consider the height for the privacy fencing. Screening to the level of the deck rail could be sufficient for sunbathing, or you may prefer a taller fence. The taller the barrier, the more it will reduce the view from the deck. Measure the desired height of your fence.

Step 3

Check the sun's path along the deck. Unless a shady deck is desired, locate the privacy fence so that you'll have sufficient sun. Measure along the deck rails of the area for the fence.

Step 4

Purchase bamboo or willow fencing. These come in rolls. Unroll some and stand back. A single layer allows some light through; someone looking in could see through, though not in detail. Double it for extra privacy (buy 24 feet for 12 feet of coverage).

Step 5

Put on safety goggles. Unroll the fence along the deck rails. Staple the bamboo or willow shades along the deck rail at 6-inch intervals. Also staple along the deck rail supports. Staple from the bottom (floor level) all the way up, and along any taller supports to the top of the fencing.

Step 6

Keep the outdoor feeling of the deck and add more privacy with potted plants. Tropical plants go well with bamboo fence. Shop for varieties compatible with your climate zone.

Things You Will Need

  • Measuring tape (use locking type if you're working solo)
  • Notepad
  • Pen
  • Assorted potted plants
  • Rolls of bamboo or willow fencing
  • Safety goggles
  • Staple gun
  • Staples


  • Check on any applicable rules or laws regarding fences before investing in materials.
  • In windy areas, or if there are no tall supports to staple a high fence to, add supports. Nail the supports to deck rails and staple the fencing to them.


  • Use safety goggles to protect eyes from splinters and particles from fencing.

About the Author

Gryphon Adams began publishing in 1985. He contributed to the "San Francisco Chronicle" and "Dark Voices." Adams writes about a variety of topics, including teaching, floral design, landscaping and home furnishings. Adams is a certified health educator and a massage practitioner. He received his Master of Fine Arts at San Francisco State University.