Friday, August 31, 2018

The Best Fire-Resistant Plants for Your Home Landscape

Best Fire Resistant Plants

Help Save Your Home From Brush Fire

As an electronic graphics operator working on live news in the Los Angeles market for more than a decade, I can tell you that the most heartbreaking events to cover are brush fires.

On occasion, there are miraculous accounts of homes saved in the midst of total devastation. Sometimes this is due to pure luck ... winds shift or unexpected rain begins to fall. But more often than not, these homes are saved by design.

During major fire news coverage, firefighters will always take an opportunity to praise homeowners who are aggressive in maintaining a defensible space around their homes and using landscaping as part of their overall fire prevention strategy. In the face of fire—when minutes count—the right plant choices can make the difference between saving or losing your home.

While fire-resistant plants can't prevent or stop flames, their stems and foliage won't contribute a significant amount of fuel to an existing fire. Fire-resistant plants are beautiful too, as you'll see in the photo gallery below.


Best Fire Resistant Plants Helicopter

Protect Your Home from Brush Fires
Create a Defensible Space
  • Clear away dry grass, brush, and dead leaves within 30 feet from your home.
  • Focus on low-growing, fire-retardant ornamental plants in your landscape design.
  • Regularly prune all plants to remove dead wood, excess stems, and branches.
  • Trees and large shrubs should be placed at least 10 feet apart from each other, and away from your home. Trees should never overhang your roof.
  • For trees 18-feet tall or more, prune lower branches 6 feet off the ground to help prevent ground fires from spreading into treetops.
  • Firewood and scrap woodpiles should be stacked at least 30 feet from any structures, especially your home. Clear away flammable vegetation located within 10 feet of woodpiles.
  • Butane and propane tanks should be kept at least 30 feet from any structures. Clear away flammable vegetation located within 10 feet of butane or propane tanks.
  • Water just enough to keep plants healthy. Too much promotes excess plant growth and creates more potential fire fuel, while too little lowers the moisture content and causes plants to burn more readily.
  • Most importantly, the 30-foot defensible space must be maintained regularly in order to be effective.
  • Note: In extremely hazardous areas, the California Public Resources Code, Section 4291, requires clearance of flammable vegetation for a minimum distance of 30 to 100 feet from structures.

Best Fire Resistant Plants Landscape

Fire Resistant Plant Lists
Helpful Resources
Fire-Resistant Plants for Home Landscapes
Comprehensive Fire-Resistant Plant List

Fire Resistant Plants List Home Landscape

Fire Resistant Plant Gallery
Fire-Resistant Plants Listed by Common Name

There are no fireproof plants, but the ones listed here are known to be fire resistant or fire retardant. These plants can be damaged or killed by flames, but their foliage and stems don't contribute significantly to the fuel or intensity of a fire.

Century Plant
Succulent
Best Fire Resistant Plants Century Plant

Coreopsis
Perennial
Best Fire Resistant Plants Coreopsis



Crape Myrtle
Flowering Tree
Best Fire Resistant Plants Crape Myrtle

European Olive
Evergreen Tree
Best Fire Resistant Plants European Olive

French Lavender
Evergreen Shrub
Best Fire Resistant Plants French Lavender

Glossy Privet
Evergreen Tree
Best Fire Resistant Plants Glossy Privet

Heavenly Bamboo
Evergreen Shrub
Best Fire Resistant Plants Heavenly Bamboo

Ice Plant
Succulent
Best Fire Resistant Plants Ice Plant

Iris (Any Variety)
Rhizome
Best Fire Resistant Plants Iris

Jade Plant
Succulent
Best Fire Resistant Plants Jade Plant

Kangaroo Paw
Evergreen Perennial
Best Fire Resistant Plants Kangaroo Paw

Lantana
Perennial
Best Fire Resistant Plants Lantana

Manzanita
Evergreen Shrub
Best Fire Resistant Plants Manzanita

Matilija Poppy
Perennial Subshrub
Best Fire Resistant Plants Matilija Poppy

Photinia
Evergreen Shrub
Best Fire Resistant Plants Photinia

Purple Sage
Evergreen Shrub
Best Fire Resistant Plants Purple Sage

Rockrose
Evergreen Shrub
Best Fire Resistant Plants Rockrose

Rosemary
Perennial Herb
Best Fire Resistant Plants Rosemary

Statice or Sea Lavender
Perennial
Best Fire Resistant Plants Statice Sea Lavender

Sweet William
Perennial
Best Fire Resistant Plants Sweet William

Valley Oak
Deciduous Tree
Best Fire Resistant Plants Valley Oak

Verbena
Perennial
Best Fire Resistant Plants Verbena

Vinca Minor or Periwinkle
Flowering Groundcover
Best Fire Resistant Plants Vinca Minor Periwinkle

Yarrow
Perennial
Best Fire Resistant Plants Yarrow

Yucca, Our Lord's Candle
Evergreen Perennial
Best Fire Resistant Plants Yucca

Fire-Resistant Plants for Home Landscapes
by Pacific Northwest Extension
We've included a link to the online version of this helpful resource in our courtesies section at the bottom of the page.

Theodore Payne Foundation
Sun Valley, California

The Theodore Payne Foundation for Wild Flowers and Native Plants was founded in 1960. The private, non-profit organization promotes the understanding and preservation of California native plants.

The Foundation is located in Sun Valley, about fifteen miles northwest of downtown Los Angeles. The nursery is very popular with southland residents who enjoy using California native plants in their gardens. The Foundation also operates an education center where visitors can learn more about California natives.

Some of the most popular programs involve incorporating California flora in the home landscape, which includes the collection of wild seeds for use in propagation. Adults may choose from courses in the horticulture, botany, and ecology of California native plants for the general public.

There are also a number of educational programs for children concerning plant and animal relations, butterflies, and creative ways to use native plant materials.


Theodore Payne in His Own Words
A Voice for California Native Plants

Theodore Payne's Legacy
By the time Theodore Payne retired in 1958, more than 400 species of native plants were made available to the public. The Foundation has been providing education about California natives for more than 50 years.

Firescaping: Creating Fire-Resistant Landscapes, Gardens, and Properties in California's Diverse Environments
by Douglas Kent

Fire Safe Landscaping


Explore Simply DIY
Best Fire Resistant Plants

Beautify Your Home and Garden
Courtesies
Fire-Resistant Plants for Home Landscapes