top of page

Firewising Your Lot

A windblown firestorm can blow embers 3 miles ahead of the fire.  The following steps can greatly reduce the chance of these embers causing a fire on your property, your neighbor’s property, and within our community.

1.  REMOVE LEAF, NEEDLE AND CONE LITTER – Clear your property to a minimum of 10 feet next to your house/deck to protect it from ground fire.


2.  LIMB-UP - Prune lower branches up off the ground to keep a ground fire from reaching shrub or tree limbs.

         Shrubs:  limb-up 12 inches (Such as scrub oaks, manzanita and similar plants)

         Trees:    limb-up at least 3 feet


3.  REMOVE OR REDUCE LADDER FUEL – Scrub oaks, smaller trees and manzanita that grow under larger trees allow fire to spread to the larger trees. Also, by removing this “ladder fuel”, the larger trees get more moisture and nutrients for a healthier life.


  If for decorative reasons you can’t get yourself to remove the ladder fuel from under large trees, then lower the height of the “ladder fuel” and limb-up trees so there is at least a 3-foot separation between the tops of the “ladder fuel” and the lowest branches of the larger tree. Then, limb-up the “ladder fuel” up off the ground.


4.  THIN DENSE SCRUB OAK AND MANZANITA – To help reduce the spread of fire, dense shrubbery needs to be thinned. 


Thin the dense scrub oak and manzanita by removing complete sections in a checkerboard pattern while keeping the roots in place. 


The separation between the checker-boarded scrub oak and manzanita should be wide enough to easily walk between.  Keeping the roots in place of the plants you cut down will help reduce ground erosion.


5.  REMOVE DEAD OR BROKEN TREES, BRANCHES, BRUSH – This is hazardous fire fuel.


6.  THIN DENSE TREES - Tree crowns should be at least 10 feet apart.  Trees closer are not only a severe fire hazard but there are not enough nutrients to maintain the health of all the trees.  Tall skinny pines with only needles at the tops are very unhealthy and should be removed.






10. REMOVE MISTLETOE - Mistletoe is a parasite that can harm the health of the host tree, and can spread to other trees. Please remove it.


Let's keep Portal III safe and beautiful!  THANK YOU – for Firewising Your Property


Last Day to set out brush

2019 Brush Pickup Date:

bottom of page