The Fire-Smart Sanctuary
Create a fire-smart sanctuary. By using sustainable and earth friendly garden practices, your garden can be a place for pollinators and insects to travel through, making it a pollinator corridor.
Here’s a fire-smart landscaping tip from UC Marin Master Gardeners. Spring is the time to make your garden lean, clean, and green, and create a well maintained and defensible space around your property.
Before each fire season, re-evaluate your lean, clean and green landscape. For more information on fire-smart landscaping see: http://marinmg.ucanr.edu/Fire-smart_Landscaping/
A fire-smart landscape can have many types of trees. Remember the design of defensible spaces in your garden. Plan ahead. Space trees so that at maturity the canopies will have 10 feet of clearance from the roof and chimney.
Questions about choosing and placing the right tree to create a fire-smart landscape? Visit http://marinmg.ucanr.edu/Fire-smart_Landscaping/
Time to Prune!
Here’s a fire-smart landscaping tip from U C Marin Master Gardeners. Reduce fuel load by pruning. Winter is a good time, especially for dormant or deciduous trees and shrubs.
Prune after the leaves drop and before the buds form.
Remember the 3 D’s: dead, damaged and diseased parts should be removed.
Prune dead and twiggy overgrown shrubs like lavender
Remove tree branches at least6 feet from the ground orup to 1/3 of their height
Remove any limbs 10 feet from the chimney or roof and maintain separation between trees or groups of trees
Avoid topping trees and shearing hedges as this causes weak and twiggy growth and more fuel for a fire.
Make your garden fire-smart by removing dead material and maintaining separation between your plants. For more information on how and why to prune and specific plant requirements visit http://marinmg.ucanr.edu/Fire-smart_Landscaping/
Plan your fire-smart garden. Consider the existing plants, budget, and how much maintenance you are willing to do. Start by understanding the defensible space zones.
The U C Marin Master Gardener website can help choose the right plants for the right place for a healthy and fire-smart garden. For more information go to http://marinmg.ucanr.edu/Fire-smart_Landscaping/
Plant Spacing in the Defensible Landscape.
A fire-smart gardening tip from UC Marin Master Gardeners. Space trees and shrubs in your garden to minimize the transmission of fire from one plant to another and ultimately your house.
-Right Plant, Right Place
U C Marin Master Gardeners always say to plant the “right plant in the right place” as a formula for success. In a fire-smart landscape there are no fire-resistant plants, since all plants can burn. Plants should be water wise and ecologically sound, well maintained and in good health. Add proper irrigation and maintenance, and keep them free of dead material and fallen leaves.
Fall is a great time to do fire-smart maintenance. Here are some tips from UC Marin Master Gardeners:
Questions about creating a fire-smart landscape? Visit http://marinmg.ucanr.edu/Fire-smart_Landscaping/
As wildfires surged in 2017 and 2018 those of us in the climate and environmental community focused on the connection between wildfires and climate change. We noticed heat waves, melting snow earlier in the spring, alarming rise in state’s average temperature, and prolonged drought. Scientists agree that climate change has increased the length of the season and the frequency of extreme weather events.
A leading climate scientist at University of California, Merced, estimated that the frequency of extreme wildfires would increase by nearly 50 percent if global greenhouse gas emissions continued at a high rate. At the same time other environmental organizations were raising concerns about the impact of wildfires on biodiversity and the ecology of Marin’s vegetation landscape.