During shelter in place, you can actively prepare for the upcoming fire season. Restricted activities to flatten the curve may have you worried about the wildfire challenge that warm dry weather will bring soon. You can reduce your wildfire risk! While you are home with additional time; start now to create defensible space around your home, organize your Firewise community in creative non-gathering ways, or harden your home.
SCCFSC wants to remind you that while many wildfire preparation activities can be done safely under Shelter in Place orders, residents should strictly adhere to all county and state guidelines. Additionally, when doing work be highly aware of preventing injuries needing care from our already strained medical system.
What is SHELTER in YARD?
The SHELTER in YARD is the SCCFSC’s new non gathering compliant program to encourage residents to create defensible space for their homes while they are sheltering in place. We will be utilizing pictures, diagrams, descriptions and other resources to help you know what work to perform in your yard while staying at home.
Is your defensible space ready?
Get outdoors and get trimming! Spring rain makes everything sprout. These freshly sprouted grasses and weeds turn into lightweight flash fuels as they dry out. They burn easily if embers land on them. Pull them out from under decks, clean them out of gutters, mow and manicure areas where you want to keep the vegetation.
How clear is the immediate 5 foot zone around your house?
This is the ring around your structures that should have no vegetation. Marked by the red line around the house.
- Use rocks, pathways and hardscapes against your structure.
- If embers land on nonflammable hardscape they have no tinder to begin a fire next to your house or under the eaves.
- Vines should not be climbing up the arbor that is attached to your home.
- Porches should be free of debris and flammable doormats
The 5-30 foot lean and green zone?
The next ring around your structure should be well tended plants.
- Space plants both horizontally and vertically so if one were on fire it can’t set its neighboring plant a blaze and spread the fire.
- Tree limbs should not be touching your house or over your chimney.
- Flame height is typically 3-5 times the height of the plant. Does your three foot beautiful flowering shrub have 9-15 feet above it before it reaches the tree understory? If not, the shrub needs to be shorter or the tree limbs need trimmed up higher.
And the 30-100 foot zone?
Are grasses mowed, broom removed, bushes spaced and trimmed ladder fuels trimmed up? There are many resources on our pages to guide you on yard maintenance for defensible space. Click Here
If it applies to your property, how is the slope 100-200’ below your home or structures?
Fire typically moves uphill so thinning and using the techniques above to reduce the amount of vegetation below your home will help reduce the risk.