It’s fire season, and it’s important to create a fire-resistant landscape for homes located in fire-prone areas.
We teamed up with Fire Consultant Craig Letz to show the different strategies to reduce the risk of a fire. Check out the video here.
Here are some tips and measures you can take:
Spread Out Vegetation: Plant trees, shrubs, and other vegetation with adequate spacing between them; this helps prevent the rapid spread of fire from one plant to another.
Choose Fire-Resistant Plants: Fire-resistant plants have high moisture content and low flammability. This Oregon State University Extension Office guide has excellent ideas for ground cover, perennials, shrubs, and trees.
Zone Designation: Divide your landscape into zones based on their proximity to the house. The closer the zone is to the house, the more restrictive the measures should become.
- Close to the House: Implement the most restrictive measures here. Use non-flammable materials like gravel and fire-resistant plants in this area. Focus on minimizing potential ignition sources, such as using fine mesh screens for vents to avoid ember ignition.
- Further from the House: Farther away from the house, there is an opportunity for native plants to live. Since some native plants in the area can be more flammable, it is important to space them properly from each other.
Siding Materials: If you have wood siding, ensure there’s a close inspection and clearance of vegetation near the walls. Consider using fire-resistant siding materials like stucco or cementitious fiber.
Privacy Fences: If you want to use a wood fence, make sure it is constructed with non-combustible materials or fire-retardant-treated wood. Keep the area around the fence six inches clear of combustible materials.
- Tree Pruning: Keep tree branches pruned and away from the ground to prevent flames from quickly reaching the structure.
- Decking Materials: Prefer non-combustible materials like concrete, pavers, or composite decking for your deck. If using wood, treat it with fire-retardant material. Underneath the deck, make sure to close off the space beneath the deck to prevent embers from blowing in and accumulating.
By implementing these measures, you can significantly reduce the risk of fire spreading to your house and create a more fire-resistant landscape. It is important to stay informed about fire safety guidelines and follow local regulations.