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Tips For A Fire Safe Lawn
Editor In Chief, United Home Improvement
Fires are responsible for destroying hundreds of homes and acres
each year. What many homeowners do not know is that they can
significantly reduce the likelihood of a fire spreading
uncontrollably and destroying property by simply taking the time to
tend to simple fire safe landscaping techniques. A fire safe
landscape uses fire resistant plants that are purposefully planted
to resist the spread of fire to your home.
The number one way to create a fire safe landscaping is to develop a
defensible space within 30 feet around your home. This includes
planning out the choice of plants, spacing and maintenance. You will
have to remove all flammable vegetation including dead plants, dead
trees, and dead shrubs; as well as leaves, low-hanging branches and
other unnecessary plant parts. You should also replace dense
flammable plants with fire-resistant plants.
Beyond 30 feet of your home you should remove all debris, dead wood
and low hanging branches. Small trees should be removed as well
because they can allow ground fires to jump into tree crowns. Be
sure to carefully prune trees and shrubs and place them at least 20
feet from any structures. Trees should be spaced 30 feet apart and
kept at a height of 8 to 10 feet.
Additional Fire Safe Landscaping Techniques:
• Keep trees furthest from your house, shrubs can be closer, and
bedding plants and lawns are nearest the house.
• For trees taller than 18 feet, prune lower branches within six
feet of the ground.
• Trim grass on a regular basis.
• Use masonry or stone walls to separate plant groups and add
variety to your landscape.
• Landscape your property with fire-resistant plants and vegetation.
Plants that hold more moisture are your best options. Also,
hardwood, maple, poplar and cherry trees are less flammable than
pine, fir and other conifers.
• At a distance of at least 30 feet from your home, store flammable
materials, liquids and solvents in metal containers.
• Keep vegetation green during dry seasons.
• Install smoke alarms on all levels of the home.
• Keep firewood stacked at least 30 feet from your home.
• Use stone walls, patios, swimming pools, decks and roadways to
create fire safe zones.