Firescaping advice for homeowners

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – With the Santa Ana winds right around the corner, Armstrong Garden Centers is reminding people that even a little fire can spark and spread in the blink of an eye, so preparation is the key to safety.

Not all wildfires can be prevented, but we can all certainly help deter wildfires from our homes and do our best to keep everyone safe. Simple preventative lawn care can be the difference between a protected property and a scorched one.

“We want to help ensure the safety of homeowners and their homes, especially those living in high-risk areas,” said Gary Jones, Armstrong Garden Centers chief horticulturist. “While no plant is fireproof, simple firescaping can be the solution, whether it’s choosing plants with fire retardant abilities, knowing proper defensible landscape maintenance or keeping irrigation systems in excellent shape.”

Armstrong Garden Centers provides these firescaping tips to help homeowners safeguard their homes by creating and maintaining a fire-resistant landscape:

1. Know your plants and research their fire retardant abilities.
2. Replace flammable trees and shrubs with fire-resistant varieties.
3. Remove any dead, diseased or dying trees or shrubs.
4. Create a wide “firebreak” around your home by removing brush and dried grass from the perimeter of your property.
5. Dense brush means more fire fuel. Keep shrubs and trees thinned out, remove skirts from palms.
6. Keep irrigation systems in working order and check regularly for adequate coverage.
7. Eliminate overhanging branches from driveways that could restrict firetrucks.
8. Keep turf in good condition, including responsibly watering plants or removing dried grass and replacing with a fire-resistant ground cover.
9. Feed plants and shrubs with organic fertilizers. This reduces quick, soft growth that often results from high-nitrogen chemical fertilizers.
10. Keep roofs and gutters free of dead leaves and other debris.

“Firescaping is one of the most critical steps homeowners can take to prevent property loss and ensure their own safety,” said Jones. “Vegetation can either lead a fire to a structure or stop it.”

For more information on firescaping, please visit

Categories: Good Morning San Diego, In Studio Guests, Wildfires