FIRESCAPING your garden

Image and text sourced from http://piket-bo-berg.co.za/Fire/FirescapeGarden.PDF

Firescaping specifically refers to landscaping in ways that will reduce the probability of fire catching and spreading through the firescaped area (e.g. a garden).

Best of both worlds

When people choose to build or buy a home in a high-hazard fire area, they should do so knowing that their entire property, including their home, is potentially fuel for a fire. The lifestyle associated with living close to nature is becoming a popular choice worldwide – so much that the term wildland/Urban interface zone has been coined. Fire is a natural part of many ecosystems, which means that it is not a case of “IF” there is a wildland fire, but “WHEN” there is a wildland fire…! However, it is possible for a home to be situated in a natural, fire-adapted environment and survive a wildfire without damage.

The firewise approach

The concept of “FireWise Communities” is a concept originally developed in the USA and is currently being adapted and implemented in South Africa (www.firewisesa.org.za). The FIreWise approach emphasises community responsibility in designing a safe community as well as effective emergency response, and individual responsibility for safer home construction and design, landscaping and maintenance.

By making changes in the home ignition zone (the area including and immediately surrounding the home), homeowners can substantially reduce the risk of their home becoming fuel for the inevitable fire. Examples of these changes are making sure that there is adequate access to the home and an adequate water supply and other strategies included in the FireWise approach.

Read all about the firewise approach here: http://piket-bo-berg.co.za/Fire/FirescapeGarden.PDF