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Now that spring is in full blown and summer is just around the corner, spending time in your outdoor living space is more common. While you are lounging in the sun, enjoying the fruits of your labor, did you think about whether or not your landscaping is fire-smart? Wildfires love to occur in all areas of the U.S., not just California. Combine extremely dry conditions and a gust of wind, and your home and family may be at threat of a fire. Here are a few tips to consider when landscaping:
1) RETAINING WALLS - Build retaining walls on hills with slopes to help prevent fire from spreading up and down the hill. Walls will also aid in soil erosion prevention.
2) PATHWAYS - Create wide brick or paver pathways to divide garden to help prevent fire from spreading across the landscape.
3) DECIDUOUS - Trees that don't produce a lot of dead wood are recommended in areas with high fire danger. Resin-rich conifers such as pine, juniper or spruce should be avoided if possible.
4) LOW-GROWING OPTIONS - Try and select compact shrubs, trees and perennials and allow enough space between the plants to avoid a grouping of fire-prone materials.
5) FIRE-RESISTANT PLANTS - Some plants are more resistant to fire due to a higher level of moisture in their leaves. Choose colorful plants such as succulents, cacti thyme, lavender and iris to create a beautiful, but more fire-resistant garden.
6) CLEAN UP DEAD DEBRIS - Keeping your garden and landscape free of any dead and dying debris is one of the best ways to avoid potential fires. Rake leaves, prune and remove all dead branches on shrubs and trees, especially those close to the ground.
7) BE PREPARED - We do NOT recommend fighting wildfires on your own. We suggest you call 911 immediately. However we do recommend keeping extra water hoses readily accessible in your garage or shed in the event that a small fire breaks out.
Taking the time to landscape your yard with these guidelines in mind can be the difference between a major fire disaster and a safe outdoor environment. We hope these tips will help keep you, your family and your home safe this spring and summer.
For more information regarding how Anchor Heating and Air Conditioning can help keep you and your family comfortable this spring and summer, give us a call at (770) 942-2873.