Firewise Landscaping Design – Part 1 – An Overview
Wildland fires take place all across the United States. Once thought to be merely a problem that took place in the western aspects of the United States, now people and companies are taking a harder look at the factors that combine to make fire-wise landscaping so much more functional and desirable.
The principles of fire-wise landscaping are simple ones. The forces of wind, fuel, and the behavior of the fire need to be taken into account in order that maximum protection can be given to the homes and buildings that may be in the path of a wildfire.
When a wildfire takes place, the natural materials that are already in place can interact with the landscaping that has been put into place by the human factor, in addition as the buildings in the immediate area. The results of this can be devastating to those who lose their homes and character.
There is no vicinity in the United States or in other places that is completely immune to a wildfire. That holds true of the western desert states, in addition as the eastern hardwood forest states. The areas of most concern of course are where homes and character sit side-by-side with forested areas.
Any fire, in spite of of indoors or outdoors will follow a given path. The path that the wildfire takes will be controlled essentially by three variables. These are fuel availability, the ground on which is it burning, in addition as the common direction and the speed of the wind.
A fire that begins in low dried grasses such as the popular deer grass, will burn rapidly making its way to trees that may reside nearby. Fire will climb, from the lowest to the highest fuels. This is called laddering the fuel. It’s one method that a wildland fire can take a meaningful keep up on the ground and gather strength to keep moving forward.
All fire, whether indoors or out requires oxygen, heat, and fuel to survive. If you remove just one of those items then the fire loses its chance for increasing the strength and survival. Landscaping in such a way that the wildland fire that may arise has an interruption in one of those three items method that you’ve done your best to eliminate the chances of permitting the fire to grow and continue.
You can very effectively increase the chances that your home will survive a wildland fire by planning the design not only of the home, but also of the landscaping that surrounds it.
-The basic principles of firewise landscaping are:
-Reduction of the kind of fuel that is obtainable to the fire by avoiding mulch and other flammable types of plant surround or walkway material.
-Removal of very flammable plants
-Removal of dried or dead tree and plant materials around the home.
-Reduce the plants or trees that many hang over the top of your home
Space trees more apart to prevent fire jumping from one to another.
-Add planned fire breaks so that the fire has an area of no fuel
-Remove the ladder effect so that fire cannot make the jump from low brush to tree branches.
Each of these methods offers you some chance of interrupting the path of the fire. In addition, a wide area of lawn, a stone or dirt driveway and paths or sidewalks can also offer smaller firebreak areas when well planned.
Selection of the proper plant life, adequate spacing of the trees and correct placement of the items in your hypothesizedv landscaping can help to assure that your home does survive a fire.
Preplanning is a great way to assure that you have the best firewise landscaping possible. Evaluating the site, assessing the surrounding area, and working with an expert in firewise landscaping principles method that you and your home have the best chance of being together for many years to come.