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Preparing for Santa Ana Winds

Now is the time to start preparing for the ‘Santa Ana Winds’, which typically blow late September through mid-December. Safeguard your home against the danger of falling branches and debris from your trees, be aware of wildfire dangers, make sure you have plenty of clearance around your home and be aware of evacuation plans if you live in fire prone areas.

Being proactive this time of year can save you time, money and heart ache. Have a visual ‘Tree Inspection’ to spot actual or potential hazards and recommend any hazard control measures that may need to be taken.

Then, for example, we can prune any heavy branches that are directly over your house, driveways, garage, fences, play areas, walkways, picnic tables, or any other potential problem areas. This is especially important if the branches or trunks show any signs of disease, insect infestation, decay or other physical damage (perhaps from vehicles, lawnmowers or storm damage). Or if there is significant damage to a tree we can inform you of your options.

Keeping your trees pruned and free of any unwanted debris is the first step to keeping your home and family safe during the ‘Santa Ana Winds’.

The second step is making sure your property is clear of any dry brush near your home if you live in fire prone areas. California has been hit hard by the lack of rain and our ground is extra dry this year. The vegetation around homes and properties has become kindling to fire and it is urgent to make sure that your property has the proper clearance to maintain fire safety as we head into the ‘Santa Ana Wind’ season.

Third, the U.S. Forest Service unveiled a website, http://www.santaanawildfirethreat.com for the Santa Ana Wildfire Threat Index, which it developed with meteorologist at San Diego Gas & Electric, UCLA researchers and the Desert Research Institute, which is the environmental research arm of the Nevada System of Higher Education. The public now has access to the same daily predictions of wildfire danger that fire agencies have used for years, allowing residents to safeguard their homes.

The index rates how likely Santa Ana winds are on a particular day to rapidly spread a fire based on wind speed, humidity and moisture in plants and trees. The color-coded ratings are none (gray), marginal (yellow), moderate (orange), high (red) and extreme (purple).

With the new system, visitors to santaanawildfirethreat.com can click on one of four regions: Orange-Inland Empire, L.A.-Ventura, San Diego and Santa Barbara – and view the threat level for that day, as well as a five-day forecast.

Clicking on the region will reveal icons for weather stations. Clicking on a station will provide visitors with air temperature, wind speed and direction, humidity and elevation for that area.

Now is the time to get prepared before it’s too late. It’s just a matter of time before the first of many strong ‘Santa Ana Wind’ storms will hit the area. The health of your trees is essential to keeping your home, your property, family and pets safe year around.

Don’t get blown away by the Santa Ana’s! Take the first step and call Prunin Arboriculture and Landscapes for your FREE tree evaluation.

714.236.9887 | Info@Prunin.com | http://www.Prunin.com


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Protect Your Family, Your Home and Yourself from Wildfires

The Orange County Fire Authority is asking residents of fire prone canyon, urban, and coastal areas to take the necessary steps to ensure that their properties meet the, ‘Vegetation Management Maintenance Guidelines’.

Many of the high wildfire risk areas are also some of the most beautiful areas in Orange County and throughout other areas of California too.  In many cases the scenic beauty is the exact reason why people choose to live where they do. Each year, thousands of acres of wild land and hundreds of homes are destroyed by wildfires. It is up to you, the property owner, to take responsibility by preparing your home/property. By taking the appropriate step with Vegetation Management, you will be closer to ensuring your home’s survivability and your family’s safety.

What is Vegetation Management?

Vegetation Management is the controlling of plant materials for the prevention of fire spread. Vegetation Management is simply removing dead and dying fuels, thinning heavy brush, and trimming trees that could contribute to a fire’s spread toward your home.

Vegetation Management practices includes:

  1. Increasing the moisture content of the vegetation.
  2. Decreasing the vegetation within 100′ of your home.
  3. Shortening plant height. Keeping plants within 10′ of a building to below 2′.
  4. Altering the arrangement of plants.
  5. Installing plants that use less water.

Four Rs in Vegetation Management:

Removal

  • Remove all dead vegetation with 100′ of your home.
  • Remove all plants found on the undesirable plant list.

Reduction

  • Reduce the amount of vegetation by pruning and thinning within 100′ of your home.
  • Trees and shrubs need to be pruned to provide separation.
  • Plants within 10′ of your home should be 2′ or lower to prevent flame length.

Replacement

  • Remove highly combustible plants within 100′ of your home.
  • When installing new plants make sure to install them with proper spacing and mature plant size in mind.

Resistant

  • Use fire resistive plants whenever possible.
  • Keep in mind that if you are using the recommended plants, it is still imperative that you still reduce the amount of plant material by thinning by utilizing the spacing guidelines for both vertical separation and horizontal separation.

Many people do not view the plants that grow on their property as a threat. But in terms of a wildfire, what is growing adjacent to your home or dwelling can have considerable influence on the survivability. All vegetation, including naturally occurring native plants and ornamental plants in the residential landscape, is a potential fuel for a wildfire. If the vegetation is properly spaced and maintained, a wildfire can be slowed down, the flame lengths are reduced, and the amount of heat reduced, all of which contribute to your house or dwelling surviving a wildfire.

The success of wildfire preparedness, ‘Vegetation Maintenance’ and more importantly, its ability to reduce multiple structure loss and the high probability of fatalities, depends on each property owner’s aggressive participation in the removal of vegetation around their property. It’s not a question of ‘if’ but ‘when’ the next wildfire will occur in Orange County. Through advanced planning and preparation we can all be ready for wildfire.

Prunin Arboriculture and Landscapes can assist you with each step of this process. Our certified Arborists can assist you with assessment of current trees, shrubs and plants that you have on your property, and make the proper suggestions to ensure that you meet the recommends guidelines. We have crews standing by to assist you with your ‘Vegetation Maintenance’ and to ensure that your property is prepared.

Call today for a FREE consultation and for more information on how Prunin Arboriculture and Landscapes can help you with your, ‘Vegetation Maintenance’.

 Phone: (714) 236-9887  |  Email:  Info@Prunin.com  |  Website:  http://www.Prunin.com