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Fire-smart Landscaping Tip: Mindfully Mulch

Mindfully Mulch with Wildfire Preparedness in Mind

UC Marin Master Gardeners like the mantra, mulch, mulch, mulch.  Adding wood mulch to your landscape helps to improve soil structure and fertility.  In a fire-smart landscape, it’s important to take precautions when using mulch.  Please follow these guidelines to create defensible space around your home:

  1. Zero to five feet from your house: use only non-combustible mulch such as stone, rock and gravel.
  2. Five to 30 feet from your home: use composted wood chips or bark nuggets. Limit mulch depth to two inches to prevent embers from smoldering. Separate continuous wood chip areas with non-flammable materials such as decomposed granite, gravel and rocks.
  3. 30 feet and beyond from your home: use composted or medium to large wood chips up to a depth of three inches.
  4. Do not use fine, stringy mulches. They burn faster than larger chunks.

For more information on fire-smart landscaping, visit UC Marin Master Gardeners at