Safe yards in the Sierras

Conservation organization offers a guide to wildfire protection for the home

Life in the Sierra Nevada foothills is beautiful, but as we know from this summer’s spate of disastrous wildfires, it can also be dangerous. Butte County’s series of blazes charred thousands of acres in the foothill and mountain regions, destroying most everything in their paths, including several hundred structures.

To help homeowners protect their properties, the Sierra Nevada Alliance, a coalition of conservation groups focused on protecting and restoring the range, has released a guide to landscaping in the region.

Sierra Nevada Yard & Garden, a 157-page guide, offers residents advice on creating attractive yards and gardens that will protect their homes against wildfire. It includes information on establishing spaces that take little maintenance, flourish with native species, and conserve the area’s precious water. Readers will find real-life examples from folks who live anywhere from 900 to 6,200 feet in the Sierra.

Hard copies of the full-color publication are available for purchase ($14 plus shipping), and are also downloadable (for free!) at the organization’s Web site,