Defensible Space

Summer is here – and so is the hot, dry weather.

Wildfire season is predicted to be intense again, with record high temperatures.
One way to be ready for wildfires is to create defensible space.

Defensible space is the buffer you create between a building on your property and the grass, trees, shrubs, or any wildland area that surround it in order to slow down and stop the spread of wildfire.

  • Zone 0: The Ember-Resistant Zone, 5 feet from any structure.
    • Clear out all dead and dying debris surrounding your home and on top of your roof.
    • Clear out gutter debris regularly.
    • Consider relocating your garbage, recycle, and yard trimmings carts outside of this zone.
  • Zone 1: The Clean, Lean and Green Zone, 30 feet out.
    • Routinely trim trees.
    • Remove branches over your roof.
    • Maintain a minimum of 10 feet between branches and other trees.
  • Zone 2:The Reduce Fuel Zone, 30 feet to 100 feet out.
    • Cut grass below four inches.
    • Create a space between trees, shrub

Extra Yard Trimmings

If you find yourself with extra yard trimmings when creating your defensible space, please check the guidelines for setting out extra material in your service area. Contact Customer Service for any questions or extra service needs.

Community Resources

Zanker Landscape Materials: Thinking of relandscaping to prepare your yard? Check out Zanker Landscape Materials, which offers recycled landscaping products. For water retention, try a top layer of compost around your plants instead of mulch, which can be flammable. For weed suppression, try Zanker’s non-flammable aggregate products like crushed base rock, brick fines, pebbles, and more.

Bay Area Redwood: For large redwoods on site too close to a structure, Bay Area Redwood provides discounted Redwood removal. Bay Area Redwood recovers this high-quality wood for fabricating artisanal wood products in exchange for lower removal costs. 

Upcoming Educational Opportunities:

Santa Clara County: Fire Department, Community Wildfire Webinars

Monterey County: Fire Safe Council, Wildfire and You

PG&E: Regional Wildfire Safety Webinars


For more information on fire preparedness please visit