How to plant your marine garden for fire safety

By falling, the leaf will fall, a dried flower will bloom, and a dead needle will fall: many needles will fall.

In our dry summer, fire-prone areas are all natural but dangerous. It is now a key component of maintenance of property.

“Most homes destroyed by wildfires are ignited by fire showers,” said Rich Shortl, executive director of FIRESafe Marin. Maintenance is the best way to prevent cracks.

This good practice includes keeping the roofs and pipes clean. Leaf litter, dead twigs and branches sprouted. And the dead branches have been removed.

“These activities are very important in the first 5 feet around the house,” he said. “Many trees and shrubs are losing their moisture because of the drought. Now is the time to renovate our backyards with maintenance. ”

Photo by Arvind Kumar

Western Redbud is a safe alternative to property.

It is also important to choose plants that are better resistant to fire than others, to keep plants and soil healthy and to water them properly.

It also suggests that gardeners should consider when designing – vertically and horizontally – when constructing a garden.

Vertical openings include cutting down trees from other bushes and away from the roof and house. This can reduce the risk of creating a “fuel ladder” that spreads fire to tree branches.

A good horizontal gap is the concept of breaking the path of fire. The idea of ​​”plant islands” is a clever strategy that has been used in difficult places, such as rocks or pebbles. They need a wider slope to ease the spread.

Choose glue carefully. Most of us appreciate organic fertilizer because it has the ability to destroy weeds, improve the soil, and maintain soil moisture, and we may all use it to carry bags in the nursery, but now may be the time to think about this again.

Sliced ​​red wood or cedar bark, sometimes called gorilla hair, is highly flammable and suggests not to use FIRESafe Marin, especially within 5 feet of structure.

The best choices can be difficult – for example rocks, gravel, rotten granite, bricks or concrete. These work for roads, destinations and recreational areas.

Far from buildings, small fragments of wood chips or large pieces of bark can be made.

• Avoid flammable plants. So many people in Marin love bamboo for its rapid growth, smooth appearance and privacy. FIRESafe Marin advises you not to install or protect it, but instead offers some options for fences and screens such as Amer Maple, Private, Barberry, Camellia, Bird Plum, Russian Olive, Scallonia or British Laurel.

Photo by Jackie Pasco

Western hemorrhage is good for vegetables.

In addition to bamboo, FIRESafe Marin’s list of hazardous plants includes pine trees, hecklocks, California bay trees, pine trees, palm trees with dried fruits, cypress, arbovitae, eucalyptus, manzanita, coyote brush, pampas grass, tan oak, black currant and They are Rosemary. .

Instead, consider these plants. “All plants, including native ones, are burned under normal conditions,” says Shortl. “Plant environment and maintenance have a greater impact on fire protection than not.”

There are still wise choices.

Property can be safe with trees such as maple, strawberry, western redwood, citrus, ash and Chinese pistas.

Good options for many years include agaventus, wild ginger, western Columbine, western hemorrhage, sunflower, iris, and lupine.

Need a shrub? About Angel Trumpet, Breath of Heaven, Golden Yarrow, Lantana, Lavender, Roman, Rhododendron, Azalea, Bird of Paradise and Blueberry.

Find more fire-fighting garden ideas online at A complete list of selected plants and herbs will be posted on August 25 and can be downloaded for your next trip to kindergarten.

show off

If you have a beautiful marine garden or a newly designed marine home, I would love to know about it.

Please send one (or both), an email about your favorite, and a photo or two. I will post the best ones in the following columns. Your name will be published and you must be over 18 years old and a Marine resident.

Don’t miss an event

• Join James Campbell, a beekeeping consultant and Eugene Marin Master Gardener in the free online talk “Bees Secret Life”, during which they discuss how to turn your garden into a flower garden. The talk will be on Wednesday from 1 to 2 p.m., and will be sponsored by the Marine County Free Library Corte Madera Branch and the UC Marine Master Gardeners. Go to to register.

PJ Bremer writes weekly articles on home, gardening, design and entertainment. She can be reached at PO Box 412, Kentfield 94914, or

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